Samsung has been having a tough time since the last few years, patent problems with Apple, competition from local phone companies and the latest one being – Exploding phones! Galaxy Note 7 was in the news for burning up for a couple of months. The South Korean company giant had to investigate by recalling the phones and after nearly 700 Samsung researchers and engineers testing more than 200,000 fully assembled devices and more than 30,000 batteries, Samsung has finally come with the explanations to this fiasco.
What is the fuss about Samsung Note 7?
In August 2016, Samsung had released Galaxy Note 7 with huge expectations, only to be dismayed by the repeated explosion of the device. More than a hundred explosion cases were reported all over the world, that too within a month of its sale.
So what did Samsung do?
After these incidents, by 10th October 2016, Samsung stopped the sales of Note 7, recalled about 1-2.5 million phones and started pushing an update on the phone that would limit its functionality. The whole turmoil lasted for three months.
Why does a battery explode?
We have all studied this in school chemistry, current flows from positive end (cathode) to the negative end (anode) from the outer circuit through the load.
There is a separator in the middle between the two ends containing flammable electrolytes.
If this separator is punctured, then current will flow through this hole called short-circuit (and not the outer circuit)
This current heats up the electrolyte and Ka-Boom! You have an explosion.
Samsung Explains Explosion
Samsung reported that the battery was too big for the phone, and hence they tried to squeeze it inside. Due to this, there was too much pressure on the battery and the separator got punctured leading to explosion. There were two battery issues that Samsung discovered.
Faulty design of the negative electrode has also been attribued for the overheating and explosion of the battery.
The positive terminal punctured the separator and insufficient insulation between the two terminals were also cited as the reasons of defect.
Is this the first time?
No. Back in 2009, Nokia had recalled 46 million phone batteries that were at the risk of short-circuiting and exploding. Mobile explosions have even allegedly killed people.
What lies ahead for Samsung?
Samsung’s reputation has taken a beating, thanks to this explosion saga that spread like a wildfire across the social media and they would be looking to bounce back with its new Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8 releasing this year. It is also working on its foldable smartphones that is touted to be the next big innovation in the world of smartphones.