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Samsung marketing stunt causes satellite to crash into woman’s yard

Published Oct 28th, 2019 9:32AM EDT
Samsung satellite crash
Image: Ahn Young-joon/AP/Shutterstock

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Imagine waking up one morning to a commotion outside, looking out at your front yard, and seeing what appears to be a satellite — still making noises — that has crashed and landed right in front of your home.

That was the situation that greeted Nancy Welke, in a rural Michigan town, over the weekend when a satellite connected to Samsung’s recently-launched “SpaceSelfie” marketing campaign fell from space. The debris, which Samsung described as a low-altitude “balloon,” but which likely resembles most people’s idea of a small satellite, included solar panels that look like wings and a box wrapped in aluminum foil.

The box was marked “SpaceSelfie” and reportedly included two cameras and a Samsung phone inside. “Look what just fell out of the sky and 911 is baffled and it’s caught up in our tree,” Welke marveled in a Facebook post about the discovery. According to the local Gratiot County Herald, the crash happened around 8:45 a.m. Saturday before the horses were let out on the property.

Samsung gave a statement to ABC News about “Samsung Europe’s SpaceSelfie balloon,” noting that it had been scheduled to return to earth once “weather conditions resulted in an early soft landing in a selected rural area.”

As for the SpaceSelfie campaign itself, Samsung launched it just a few days ago. The idea was for people to upload selfies to a Samsung website, and the company would overlay them onto a real-time shot of earth from space.

Samsung used actress Cara Delevingne to kick off the promotion at an event in London, with Cara’s image captured via her Galaxy S10+ and “sent up to space” so that an image of earth could be used as a backdrop. In a statement, Samsung Europe chief marketing officer Benjamin Braun said about the event: “Our relentless pioneering spirit continues to show that amazing things happen on a Samsung screen — even from the stratosphere.”

Image source: Samsung
Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.

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