It was announced last week that Samsung will go to press on Monday, 23 January with an official report detailing what really went wrong with their Galaxy Note 7.
Since killing off the Note 7 and releasing an update that permanently bricks the remaining few devices, Samsung have been conducting an internal investigation to find out why a large number of the units caught fire and exploded last year.
Their report is due out next week, and to be completely honest, after taking the plunge and going for a Galaxy S7 in December, I’m particularly interested to hear the reasons for the Note 7 fires.
After reading unconfirmed insider reports about a rushed R&D phase and cramming so much tech into an already thin device, I want to know how a doomed product like the Note 7 ever reached the shelves.
To get the elephant out of the room, I’ve long held a grudge against Samsung for the low quality and build design of some of their past products – something I’ve probably admitted a few times in my blog series, My Next Phone. I’ve also alluded to the fact that my heart said Huawei P9 but my brain said Galaxy S7 when making a decision about which phone to go with next: to be honest, I was slightly miffed that the S7 had trumped a lot of the other Android smartphones I had been considering when it came to features, specs, usability and general user experience – phone like the LG G5, Huawei P9, and Sony Xperia X Compact.
But I now have a newfound respect for Samsung, because after so many years of getting it completely wrong with flimsy plastic covers, they’ve finally turned the corner.
However, I’m still in a state of shock about the Galaxy Note 7, both from a business perspective as well as a journalistic one. I just can’t believe that a company as big as Samsung could make such a big slip-up, one that could’ve proved very costly for other companies like HTC or LG.
I’m sure their marketing budget more than covers the slip-up with the Note 7, but now that we know they’re releasing a statement that concludes their internal investigation, I’m interested to hear the ‘Official’ reason(s) for the fires. Was it that they rushed the whole process? Was there any advantage to switching to a different battery supplier? Did they try to cram too much technology into an already thin device?
Whatever the reason, I’m sure it’s something that every major smartphone and technology maker will be eagerly waiting to hear about. After all, if it is a common problem with a particular battery or style of phone, that’s something that affects the whole market, not just one company.
I’m sure that a lot of companies, from HTC, Sony, HP, Huawei and LG, to Apple, Google and Microsoft, will all be looking to learn a lot of lessons from Samsung’s mistakes. Hopefully even Samsung can be a bit self-reflective as well.