Sep 20, 2016

    Note 7 exchanges begin in S. Korea, US this week


    SAMSUNG Electronics will begin rolling out replacements of the Galaxy Note 7 in South Korea and the United States this week, moving fast to restore consumer trust hurt by faulty batteries prone to potential explosions.

    The new Galaxy Note 7 replacement devices, equipped with new batteries, became available in South Korea from yesterday and will be offered in the US from tomorrow.

    The ongoing recall affects Note 7 smartphones released in 10 nations last month, including some 400,000 units sold in South Korea and some one million in the US.

    In the US, Samsung, in cooperation with the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, had announced a voluntary recall and exchange programme for all Note 7 devices sold in the country before last Thursday.

    Samsung already began its recall process in Singapore last Friday, offering customers an apology letter, a cash voucher, a screen protection film and a bag of snacks.

    Around half its Singaporean customers exchanged their phones on the first day, the South Korean tech firm said.

    The current recall deals a costly blow to Samsung.

    It had been betting on the Note 7 to bolster its sales against competitors such as Apple and its recently released iPhone 7 and iPhone Plus.

    Given Samsung Electronics' tarnished brand image and financial costs of the recall, analysts remain uncertain over whether the company's operating profit this year can surpass the 30 trillion won (S$36.6 billion) mark as hoped.