Samsung has always made some pretty high performance smartphones. They are not always the sturdiest of phones out on the market, but they are the ones which closely match the IPhone in features and style. Some say they even exceed the IPhone in features in style. That’s not for me to say. released the highly anticipated new model of the Samsung Galaxy a little over a month ago, to lots of hype and anticipation. Something has happened with the Galaxy Note 7. And we know it’s serious because frequently we see a new story on the news about the phones catching fire. We work with cell phones, tablets and laptops every day, but we have never seen anything like this. So I set about trying to find out just what’s going on.
Initially Samsung offered to simply replace the faulty batteries. Then Samsung issued a software update that would help the owners of the Note 7 find out if their new phone had the issue that could cause their phone to catch on fire. Recently, so many of the phones have had a problem that Samsung was offering replacements. In September, most of the owners of the Samsung phone were still hopeful the issue was resolved and so they ordered the replacement phones. By this month, October, it was clear the issues weren’t resolved, and the phones could be dangerous to those who own them.
As of this week, Samsung is now offering a full refund, or the option to choose a different phone from another manufacturer, rather than offer a replacement of another Galaxy Note 7.
I found plenty of articles and posts about the fact that these phones are catching fire, what I had more trouble finding is the reason why they do. I came across a post on Cnet that made sense. They compared the phone battery fires to the ones that occurred in the hoverboards everyone was asking Santa for last Christmas. It’s the same basic problem.
“Much like the infamous exploding hoverboards, phones use lithium ion battery packs for their poser, it just so happens that the liquid swimming around inside most lithium ion batteries is highly flammable. If the battery short circuits, say by puncturing the incredibly thin sheet of plastic separating the positive and negative sides of the battery, the puncture point becomes the path of least resistance for electricity to flow to. It heats up the flammable liquid electrolytes at that spot and if the liquid heats up quickly enough, the battery can explode.”
At least that seems to be the prevailing theory at the moment and it makes sense to me. It’s true that Samsung is not the first cell phone company to experience this issue, back in 2009 Nokia was forced to recall phone batteries which could have a problem with short circuiting.
From other sources, I have gathered it also seems that batteries arent the only issue that have caused this problem, though. There was also a manufacturing defect which caused some of the issues with the Samsung Phones. Either way, always be careful with your cell phones.