This October 7, 2016, photo provided by Andrew Zuis, of Farmington, Minn., shows the replacement Samsung Galaxy Note 7 phone belonging to his 13-year-old daughter, that melted in her hand. (Via AP)
South Korea’s tech giant Samsung says it has permanently stopped the production of its flagship Galaxy Note 7 smartphone after it failed to solve issues with its exploding batteries.
“(We) have decided to halt production and sales of the Galaxy Note 7 in order to consider our consumers’ safety first and foremost,” Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said in a filing to the Seoul stock exchange on Tuesday, without elaborating.
However, China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine confirmed Samsung would recall 190,984 Note 7 devices in the mainland, adding that the decision was made following discussions with the administration's enforcement division and the launch of a probe into defects.
“The product being recalled has problems with abnormal heating and burning, which can have serious consequences including fire,” the quality watchdog further said on its website
It added that Samsung would make a full refund at the original price, or replace the unit with any other model of Samsung smartphones plus giving a refund for the difference in prices between the devices.
Samsung had earlier said that the units sold to China did not appear to be affected since they used another battery supplier.
Samsung had already issued an alert asking users to immediately turn off their Galaxy Note 7 smartphones.
This file handout photo taken and released by Gwangju Bukbu Police Station on September 13, 2016 shows a blown-up Samsung Galaxy Note7 smartphone in Gwangju, South Korea. (Via AFP)
Analysts say the decision could deal a huge blow to Samsung’s reputation and outlook.
The Galaxy Note 7 went on sale on August 19, but Samsung announced the recall of 2.5 million Note 7s in early September after receiving numerous reports of the phones catching fire and hurting their owners in some cases.
Samsung, however, said that only 24 devices in every million (or one in 42,000 units) were at risk of exploding, adding that the recall served as a precautionary measure.
The tech giant confirmed the 35 reports of fire incidents after launching an initial investigation into the issue, saying malfunctioning batteries were behind the explosions.
Stock in the world’s biggest smartphone maker tumbled eight percent, sending Seoul stocks sliding 1.2 percent after it told customers to stop using their Galaxy Note 7 devices and called a halt to worldwide sales.

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