Samsung announced the results of its investigation into the Galaxy Note 7 malfunction. The South Korean electronics giant said that bad battery design and a rush to release an updated version of the phone caused some of the devices to overheat and explode, leading to a massive product recall and a huge black eye to Samsung’s reputation.
Samsung said that during the past several months, roughly 700 Samsung researchers and engineers tested more than 200,000 fully assembled devices and more than 30,000 batteries to figure out what went wrong with the Note 7 phones.
Samsung said in the report that two separate battery malfunctions caused some Note 7 phones to overheat and even catch fire in some cases.
The first problem affected the first batch of Note 7 phones that launched last fall. In those phones, the battery was too large for the casing of the phone, which caused some to overheat, according to Samsung’s report.
After Samsung recalled the initial batch of Note 7 phones, it manufactured the phone with a battery from a different supplier. But Samsung was in a rush to get the new phones out, and the new battery produced by the supplier had a defect that also caused it to overheat, the report said.
The company created an infographic which seeks to explain the problem in more detail:
Samsung says it has developed a new eight-point battery check to make sure future devices don’t suffer the same fate as the Galaxy Note 7. The test includes an X-ray of the phone and extreme testing conditions that force the battery to work harder than normal.
The company also formed a new group of third-party battery advisors that includes professors from the University of Cambridge, UC Berkeley, and Stanford University.
Now that Samsung knows what caused the problem with the Note 7, it has the unique challenge of proving its devices can be trusted moving forward.
The company says it now has the processes in place to make sure its phones don’t overheat and catch fire again, but after months of speculation, the world will have to wait for its next device to see if Samsung can follow through. The company is expected to release its next flagship phone, the Galaxy S8, this spring.
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