Samsung has issued a global recall for the Note 7, again. But this time, rather than swapping out affected devices, refurbishing them, and trying to salvage the phone, it look like Samsung is going to completely kill off the device.
The company confirmed to Motherboard that every single device it receives back — which will hopefully be all of them — will be “disposed of,” rather than repaired or refurbished.
Samsung has confirmed that it has some kind of unspecified process in the works to dispose of the phone. That seems to confirm that we won’t see any cheap refurbished or repaired Note 7 devices in the wild, apart from people who ignore Samsung’s warnings and hold onto their phones.
As Motherboard points out, scrapping millions of handsets — over 2.5 million were initially recalled, and since the production line was only just stopped, the total number of Note 7s is likely to be higher — is a waste of resources and likely to be bad for the environment. Modern smartphones are full of metals that are difficult to separate out, and even harder to dispose of in a way that’s not harmful to the environment.
Such a large number of brand-new phones have never been written off this quickly before, so it will be interesting to see if Samsung just breaks the phones down to extract rare metals, or tries to salvage any individual components.
Either way, it’s bad news for the diehard Note 7 fanboys that are still out there.