The Galaxy Note 7 recall is one of Samsung’s biggest mishaps in history. But is it a signal that there might be something wrong with more of Samsung’s smartphone batteries at large? Samsung cited 35 instances of malfunctioning batteries when it officialized the Galaxy Note 7 recall almost two weeks ago.
Since then, we learned that more than 70 Galaxy Note 7 units exploded in the US alone, but that’s not all. We also saw reports of other Samsung smartphones going up in flames.
According to BGR, This doesn’t necessarily mean that all Samsung batteries are bad. But it certainly doesn’t look good for Samsung.
A 6-year-old boy used what was initially believed to be a Galaxy Note 7 that exploded in his hands. It turns out it was a different phone that exploded, not a Galaxy Note 7. Many pointed out that fact. But the focus here is still on Samsung. That other phone was a Samsung-made Galaxy Core Prime, and it still exploded.
If that’s not enough, a Galaxy S7 edge exploded in the hands of an owner, and it was all caught on camera. It really isn’t pretty:
Meanwhile, as per Bloomberg, Samsung has decided to employ ATL batteries for the Galaxy Note 7, rather than the ones made by its SDI affiliate.
Samsung has already discovered the problem with the batteries, and it all has to do with manufacturing them. “Initial conclusions indicate an error in production that placed pressure on plates contained within battery cells,” Bloomberg notes. “That, in turn, brought negative and positive poles into contact, triggering excessive heat. Samsung, however, stressed that it needed to carry out a more thorough analysis to determine ‘the exact cause’ of battery damage.”
Smartphone explosions do occur from time to time, and all smartphone makers have experienced them. But there never was an epidemic of faulty batteries before, certainly nothing like the Galaxy Note 7. These Galaxy S7 and Galaxy Core Prime incidents are likely isolated, but they certainly don’t look good for Samsung right now.
Exploding Samsung Phones Could Push People To iPhone 7
According to Investors, News reports about Samsung smartphones exploding or bursting into flames have been a costly black eye for the South Korean consumer electronics firm. They also could be driving more smartphone shoppers to buy Apple‘s (AAPL) new iPhone 7 series handsets.
Samsung issued a recall on its Galaxy Note 7 smartphone on Sept. 2 after getting dozens of reports of batteries in the device catching fire while charging.
Apple stock rose 3.6% to 111.83 on the stock market today, hitting a nine-month high intraday. The stock has had three straight 2%-plus gains.
IBD’S TAKE: Apple shares have risen for three straight days in above-average volume. On Wednesday, Apple stock staged its first breakout in more than a year.
On Sept. 8, the Federal Aviation Administration posted a warning to airline passengers not to turn on or charge Samsung Galaxy Note 7 phones on board aircraft and not to stow them in their checked luggage.
News outlets have recounted horror stories of people injured and property damaged by fires caused by defective Samsung smartphones.
Last week, a Florida man said his Jeep Grand Cherokee caught fire when he left his Galaxy Note 7 charging in the vehicle.
Samsung says the battery problem is limited to the Galaxy Note 7, but there have been reports of other Samsung phones catching fire. For instance, an Ohio man is suing Samsung for second- and third-degree burns he says were caused when a Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge caught fire in his pocket.
On Saturday, a 6-year-old Brooklyn boy suffered burns when a Samsung Galaxy Core Prime exploded in his hands while he was watching videos on the device, the New York Post reported.
RBC Capital Markets analyst Amit Daryanani is among those who believe Apple will benefit from a backlash against Samsung smartphones.
“Samsung woes with the Galaxy Note 7 could enable Apple to actually accelerate their share gains, a dynamic we think still would have occurred in the absence of Samsung issues, but perhaps at a lower magnitude vs. the current scenario,” he said in a research report Wednesday.
S&P Global Market Intelligence analyst Angelo Zino concurred.
“We believe Samsung Note 7 issues are also contributing to the momentum for the iPhone 7 devices,” Zino said in a note Tuesday.
Apple’s iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus handsets go on sale Friday.