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Samsung to disable Galaxy Note 7 smartphones in US market

10 December 2016

Samsung announced yesterday that it would disable its Galaxy Note 7 smartphones in the US market. With the step, the company hopes to force remaining owners to stop using the devices, which were recalled for safety reasons.

According to the South Korean electronics giant, 93 per cent of Note 7 phones in the US had been returned to the company after the recall of the devices, amid reports of the smartphones exploding or catching fire.

However, to get any remaining devices off the market, Samsung said it would deliver an over-the-air update that would prevent the phones from charging. 

"To further increase participation (in the recall), a software update will be released starting on December 19 that will prevent US Galaxy Note 7 devices from charging and will eliminate their ability to work as mobile devices," Samsung said in a statement.

The company recalled around 2.5 million Note 7s from 10 markets after complaints of lithium-ion battery exploding while charging. The recall was expanded as reports emerged of replacement phones also catching fire.

The  company sold as many as 1.9 million of the phones in the US, where the device had been banned in airplanes and even from being checked in luggage.

Meanwhile, rumours that Samsung was releasing a Galaxy S7 Edge in a new colour had  been confirmed.

The colour deemed 'black pearl', was being compared to Apple's jet black finish released this year.

The new hue would be on offer in select markets 9 December and for the 128GB version of the handset.

"Black Pearl was designed to be modern and striking," Samsung said about the new black pearl finish.

"The sleek black finish blankets the entire device edges and all and adds depth to its glass design.  The result is a stylish all-black aesthetic that captures the essence of the color in its purest form."

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