Samsung’s recall of the Note7 has come in response to an unexpected surprise that occurred at an unfortunate time, but the company has handled the situation pretty well, all things are considered, says tech industry analyst Patrick Moorhead. Upon becoming aware that there was an issue with some Note7 batteries, Samsung proactively issued a release announcing an exchange program on September 2. Since then, the company has actively taken steps to coordinate the exchange program with regulatory authorities and suppliers, while undertaking a massive publicity effort to alert consumers to the exchange program. By September 22, Samsung’s recall had already reached the 15 percent mark, an impressive feat compared to other recalls by electronics suppliers, which typically consider reaching 30 percent a high mark. Here are some of the steps Samsung has taken to help its customers through the exchange process.
Samsung’s Exchange Program
In the United States, Samsung’s voluntary recall and exchange program, coordinated with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), applies to Note7s sold before September 15, 2016. Consumers who purchased a device during this time frame should immediately stop using it, power it down and initiate the exchange process. Customers who bought the Samsung Galaxy Note7 before September 15 have three options under the exchange program:
- Trading in their current Note7 for a new one that meets CPSC approval and will be available by September 21, 2016.
- Trading in their Note7 for an S7 or S7 Edge, plus replacements for Note7 accessories they bought, with a refund for any price difference.
- A refund, arranged by contacting their point of purchase.
Customers who participate in the exchange also receive a $25 gift card, in-store accessory credit, in-store credit or bill credit from select carrier retail outlets.
To determine your eligibility for the exchange, you can check your IMEI or Serial number by either using the Samsung+ app, checking the back of your phone or checking your apps settings under “Apps > Settings > About Phone or General Management > Status > IMEI information or Serial number.” You can enter your number on Samsung’s website.
If you’re eligible for an exchange, you can begin the process by notifying the carrier or retail outlet where you purchased your Note7. For example, customers who bought their device from T-Mobile can initiate an exchange by visiting a dedicated page on T-Mobile’s website or by calling T-Mobile at 1-844-275-9309. For information on other carriers, visit Samsung’s recall link. If you bought your device from Samsung, you can call their company at 1-844-365-6197.
Notifying the Public
To alert the public to its recall campaign, Samsung has launched an impressive, full-scale promotional campaign. Alerts are being sent directly to affected devices urging owners to stop using them, power them down and exchange them. To supplement this effort, Samsung has also deployed a full battery of marketing tactics. These include notifying consumers through the Samsung+ app, the company’s website, search engine results, promoted tweets, print ads and a toll-free number. Samsung is using every way possible to make sure consumers are aware of its exchange program.
To provide consumers with replacement devices, Samsung is also making a major logistics effort. To ensure that enough replacement parts are available, Samsung has expanded its battery supply line, reportedly making Chinese company Amperex Technology Limited its primary supplier, while continuing to use Samsung SDI. Samsung is also reportedly seeking a third supplier. This diversity of battery suppliers also means that not all Note7 devices are affected by the issues identified with some devices in certain countries, helping keep the exchange supply effort more manageable.