Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 was originally set to go on sale in Europe on September 2nd, but on that very day the launch was pulled and a global recall issued on account of their tendency to explode without warning. This made the regional recall process a little simpler for Samsung, given only those who had taken advantage of early delivery preorder promotions had devices in hand, but it also meant Europeans have never actually been able to straight-up buy — battery defects aside — Samsung’s finest smartphone yet. That changes October 28th, however, when the Note 7 will finally go on general sale in the region “subject to full completion of the exchange programme.” Though whether consumer confidence has been irreparably damaged already remains to be seen.
Alongside announcing the European launch date, Samsung has provided a number of updates on how the recall process is going today. In Europe, 57 percent of handsets have been handed over since exchanges began just over a week ago, causing Samsung to predict it’ll have every defective device back by early October. In the US, over 60 percent of Note 7s have been tracked down, up from roughly 50 percent last week — the pace is understandably slower as sales started on August 19th, so there are more handsets out in the wild.
Over 60 percent of phones sold in South Korea have also been exchanged, with Singapore residents leading the pack with more than 80 percent of handsets returned. In the immediate aftermath of the global recall, Samsung lost many, many billions in market value; but apparently people that wanted a Note 7 in the first place are happy to stick with the device, with roughly 90 percent of those choosing to receive a new, non-exploding model. Better the devil you know, we suppose.
The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ASCI) today released its latest results [PDF] on U.S. consumer satisfaction in the personal computer industry, including tablets, with Apple narrowly topping the charts for the thirteenth consecutive year.
Apple maintained its year-ago score of 84 out of 100 in the survey, consisting of interviews with 3,500 customers chosen at random and contacted via email in June to share their experiences with recently purchased products like Macs and iPads.
Samsung, in its second year of ASCI tracking, trailed just one point behind Apple with a score of 83 out of 100, a 6.4% rise compared to its 2015 score.
Much like the smartphone category, the personal computer industry has become a race between Apple and Samsung for both market share and customer satisfaction. Apple and Samsung dominate market share in the tablet category, but the two companies take divergent views on the future of tablets. Apple continues to add laptop-like functionality to iPads, while Samsung sees tablets as additional devices for entertainment and browsing that complement—but not replace—laptops.
Amazon, which manufactures affordable Kindle tablets but not traditional PCs, finished third in customer satisfaction with an 80 out of 100 score, while PC makers Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP, Lenovo, and Toshiba rounded off the list with scores between 73 and 78. ACSI’s scores are calculated using its so-called cause-and-effect econometric model, which it says is based upon survey-measured inputs of customer expectations, perceptions of quality, and perceptions of value.
While Apple’s customer satisfaction remains characteristically strong, many customers are getting impatient with the current state of the Mac lineup. Beyond the 12-inch MacBook, our own Buyer’s Guide lists all Mac models as Don’t Buy due to the lack of updates in several hundreds of days. iMac: 350 days. MacBook Pro: 497 days. MacBook Air: 568 days. Mac mini: 712 days. Mac Pro: 1,013 days. The latest word is that new MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models with USB-C could launch as soon as October.
Tags: Samsung, ASCI
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If you were hoping that your new, energy-efficient TV might help save the planet (and your power bill), you’re in for bad news. Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental advocacy group, has published research showing that the US’ energy ratings for TVs (such as EnergyGuide and Energy Star) don’t line up with consumption in the real world. Tests on 2015 and 2016 sets from LG, Samsung and Vizio show that they use “up to twice” as much energy as claimed, often by turning off power-saving features with “little to no” warning. Some switch off the eco-friendly mode if you so much as change the picture settings, for example, while high dynamic range video will jack up the energy draw by 30 to 50 percent. Even the test footage used for government tests doesn’t reflect the electricity you’d use in real-life viewing, the Council adds.
The NRDC goes so far as to accuse TV makers of “exploiting weaknesses” in US energy tests, designing TVs that feign compliance in test conditions but flout the rules when they’re in your living room.
None of the TV makers dispute the basic data, although the Consumer Technology Association unsurprisingly takes issue with the claims of sinister intentions. It insists that the NRDC is pushing “sensational-but-meaningless headlines” and showing an “inexplicable hostility” toward an industry that, in the long run, has saved a tremendous amount of power through TVs that honor EnergyGuide and Energy Star.
The CTA has a vested interest in defending TVs. They’re still the Association’s bread and butter, as any CES attendee can tell you. However, it’s true that TVs have become more efficient over the years, and there’s no concrete evidence that TV brands are cheating. Rather, the major concern is simply that TV energy ratings are behind the times. The Department of Energy’s testing method is 8 years old, the NRDC notes — it came about well before the advent of HDR and 4K screens. Officials may need to not only update their guidelines, but take a new approach that constantly adapts to evolving technology.
Source: NRDC, CTA
The Secret Lab Where
Nike Invented the
of Our Dreams
Nike announced this week that it’s self-lacing HyperAdapt shoes will go on sale November 28th. They’re sure to be crazy limited, but the company invited Wired in for a behind-the-scenes look at the shoe’s development. You might have a hard time grabbing a pair of your own, but at least you can take a closer look at the design process via some leisurely reading.
The Dark Web Is Mostly Full of Garbage
As Gizmodo puts it, “the dark web mostly resembles the internet of 20 years ago.”
How Samsung Botched Its Galaxy Note 7 Recall
Samsung’s mishandling the recall of its Note 7 comes down to one thing: communication.
Inside Googles’s Internet Justice League and Its AI-powered War on Trolls
Google’s Jigsaw subsidiary is using Conversation AI to identity online abuse via machine learning.
If you’ve failed to heed the warnings of Samsung and government regulators, it looks like you can now charge those recalled Note 7 batteries to 80 percent. The phones were recalled globally earlier this month following reports of exploding batteries, but the company issued an update that limited charges on the phone to 60 percent to avoid potential issues. That update only rolled out in Korea and didn’t make it to the US.
SamMobile reports that if you choose to toggle off the battery-limiting feature, you can charge the faulty phones to 80 percent. It’s unclear whether this change will make it to the US, but we’ve reached out to Samsung for more information. Even still, you’re taking a big risk by continuing to use the phones.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission urged customers in the US to stop using the devices and return them immediately. Samsung has already shipped more than 500,000 replacement handsets to the US and said earlier this week than a quarter of gadgets sold in the country had already been returned. Seriously, just go ahead and return yours if you haven’t already. After you do, you’ll notice that the battery level indicator is green instead of white. That’s how you’ll know your device is safe to use.
Image credit: SamMobile
Via: The Verge, Phandroid
Managing editor Dana Wollman, senior editor Nathan Ingraham and reviews editor Cherlynn Low join guest host Devindra Hardawar to discuss Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 recall, Uber’s self-driving cars and why the heck Google is making another messaging app.
The Flame Wars Leaderboard
- Allo brings Google’s ‘Assistant’ to your phone today
- macOS Sierra review: Mac users get a modest update this year
- Google’s next phones may be much more expensive
- I drove around Pittsburgh in a self-driving Uber
- You can hail a self-driving Uber in Pittsburgh starting today
- US government outlines its policy on self-driving cars
- Samsung recalls the Galaxy Note 7 amid battery fears
- Samsung exec explains ‘facts’ of the Galaxy Note 7 recall
- US consumer safety group recalls the Samsung Galaxy Note 7
- Samsung’s replacement Galaxy Note 7s will be in stores tomorrow
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A lot of Note 7 owners don’t have to sleep with one eye open anymore, according to Samsung’s latest press release. The company says it has already exchanged half of the Galaxy Note 7s sold in the US that had been turned in through its voluntary recall program. Further, 90 percent of the people who went in for the recall apparently asked for replacement Note 7s, which were released on September 21st, instead of getting another model. Samsung made sure those replacement devices are safe, but if you want to know if you really got one that won’t blow up, check its battery indicator. The safe Note 7s have green battery indicators, though you might have to download a software update to change its hue.
Unfortunately, Samsung didn’t reveal the state of the recall program for other countries. While the device’s battery issue only affects a small number of phones, the recall program will have to deal with 2.5 million phones overall. It doesn’t want to hear about more cases of devices overheating and setting skin and things on fire, after all. If you haven’t exchanged your device yet, get in touch with Samsung or your carrier ASAP wherever you are in the world.
More than 500,000 replacement Galaxy Note 7 phones have landed in the United States and been shipped to stores across the country, meaning anyone in need of a non-explosive device can get one tomorrow, September 21st, just as Samsung planned. Samsung is also rolling out a software update to all affected Galaxy Note 7s prompting users to turn off and exchange their devices every time they’re charged or powered on. An update released today additionally limits these phones to a 60 percent charge.
Early this month, Samsung recalled every Galaxy Note 7 sold around the world over a manufacturing malfunction that causes some devices to overheat, catch fire and even explode. The recall affects 2.5 million phones globally, and Samsung has received at least 92 reports of batteries overheating in the US alone. The Consumer Product Safety Commission officially recalled the Galaxy Note 7 on September 15th. The Federal Aviation Administration and New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority have also warned against traveling with the phones.
Twenty-five percent of all potentially flammable phones in the US have already been exchanged, Samsung tells The Verge. Anyone with a Galaxy Note 7 will be able to tell if their device is safe via a green battery icon that shows up in the status bar, always-on display mode or power-off screen.
Samsung has already hinted that there will be easy ways to determine whether or not the Galaxy Note 7 you have in your hand has a safe battery, but it’s not leaving anything to chance. The company has posted a guide that shows you exactly what to look for if you’re worried that someone gave you a dud. That green battery icon Samsung mentioned before? It’ll be everywhere, whether it’s in the status bar, the always-on display mode or the power-off screen. You can also look for a square symbol on the box label. These visual cues will likely be unnecessary before long, but it’s good to have them in case someone tries to sell you one of the fire-prone models.
Source: Samsung Newsroom
Although Samsung acted quickly to stop the bulk of Galaxy Note 7s making their way to consumers before its recall in the UK, units were delivered before the official launch. Now that it’s had to time to prepare, the company today kicked off its Galaxy Note 7 Exchange Programme, allowing those affected to swap their defective unit for a brand new one.
Samsung says that after a thorough inspection, it’s confident that the battery issue, which caused some units to explode when on charge, has been “completely resolved” in the new stock arriving in the UK this week. The new devices have been updated to show a new “green” battery icon, which replaces the older white icon to signify that it’s not affected by the same power issues.
“Our absolute priority is the safety of our customers – that’s why we are asking all Galaxy Note 7 customers to act now and exchange today. We would like to apologise to our Note 7 customers for not meeting the standard of product excellence that they have come to expect from Samsung and we sincerely thank them for their understanding and patience,” says Mobile VP Conor Pierce. “We are confident that by exchanging their existing device for a new Note 7, customers can expect to enjoy a smartphone experience of the very highest quality.”
By now, UK providers and operators should have contacted owners to arrange an exchange. Samsung’s customer support team is also handling replacements and can be contacted on 0330 7261000.