The Galaxy Note 7 recall and discontinuation have dealt a big blow to Samsung. The Note 7 disaster is estimated to cost Samsung up to $5 billion. The Korean company is trying to restore consumer goodwill. According to the Korea Herald, Samsung ran full-page apology ads on Monday in major US publications including The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The New York Times.
Samsung promises to re-examine every aspect of Galaxy Note 7
The apology letter was signed by Samsung Electronics North America President and CEO Gregory Lee. The company expresses regret over the entire situation and discusses what it is doing to prevent it in the future. The ad reads, “An important tenet of our mission is to offer best-in-class safety and quality. Recently, we fell short on this promise. For this, we are truly sorry.”
It goes on to assure customers that Samsung will re-examine every aspect of the Galaxy Note 7 from design to software to hardware to battery structure to figure out what went wrong. The company says it will try to move as quickly as possible, but will take the time “needed to get all the right answers.” Samsung had rushed the launched of Galaxy Note 7 in an attempt to beat the iPhone 7, which lacked major design changes. Now the iPhone 7 is reaping the benefits of the Note 7 recall.
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Samsung fell short on its promise
In its ad, Samsung said its mission was to offer “best-in-class” safety and quality. But the company fell short on this promise recently. A design flaw in the Note 7 led its battery to overheat and explode. Samsung had to discontinue production and sales of its flagship phablet after the supposedly safe replacement units also started catching fire. The company is now left with 4.3 million recalled Note 7 units that it has to dispose of without harming the environment.
The same ad mentions the problems the company was facing with 34 different models of top-load washing machines that have forced it to recall 2.8 million washing machines last week. Samsung had received more than 700 reports of the top of its washing machines detaching from the chassis. It is unclear whether the full-page apology ads could remedy the damage done to the Samsung brand by embarrassing product recalls.
About 85% Galaxy Note 7 owners have turned in their phones
According to a survey conducted by research firm IDC, as many as 50% of Galaxy Note 7 owners in the US were switching to the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus instead of choosing another Samsung handset. In contrast, Samsung said most of the Note 7 owners opted for another Samsung device.
Samsung said in a statement that about 85% of the Galaxy Note 7 owners in the US have returned their handsets through its Refund and Exchange Program. The company is focused on collecting the remaining Galaxy Note 7 phones. To further drive refund and exchange, Samsung will push out a software update that will limit battery charging to 60%. The update will also issue a reminder popup every time the user charges, reboots or turns on the screen of the handset.