Samsung has announced that it will permanently discontinue the production of its Galaxy Note 7 smartphone following reports that the device explodes and catches fire.
The Korean company said on Tuesday that it would stop production of the £739 phones. It came after it urged owners to shut them off and halted production.
Samsung had been hit by dozens of reports of its flagship device, a crucial rival to the iPhone, overheating due to battery faults, and in several instances catching fire and exploding.
The fault forced Samsung into an embarrassing recall a month ago, forcing it to replace millions of Note 7’s at exorbitant cost. But in recent days it has emerged that several of the replacement phones also caught fire.
Samsung said on Monday it had halted production amid an investigation, and on Tuesday urged customers to shut down their phones and for networks to stop sales.
After mounting pressure, it has now agreed to permanently stop making the device. Pulling it completely is unprecedented from a major manufacturer.
Several mobile networks, including those in the UK, said they had stopped giving customers new devices on Monday and Samsung said it had suspended production.
On Tuesday morning the company said: “Because consumers’ safety remains our top priority, Samsung will ask all carrier and retail partners globally to stop sales and exchanges of the Galaxy Note7 while the investigation is taking place.
“Consumers with either an original Galaxy Note 7 or replacement Galaxy Note 7 device should power down and stop using the device and take advantage of the remedies available.”
Faulty ‘replacement’ Note phones
While the Note 7 had returned to sale, after problems associated with the original batch were supposedly fixed, several reports of the replacement devices overheating and bursting into flames suggest the company’s problems are not over.
Last week, authorities had to evacuate a Southwest Airlines flight in Kentucky when a replacement phone began emitting smoke.
Passenger Brian Green, 43, said the device was a Galaxy Note 7 he had picked up from an authorized AT&T retailer September 21 as a replacement for another Note 7 phone he returned when the global recall was announced. Samsung had promised that the replacement models were safe.