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In what turned out to be the biggest blemish in the world's number one smartphone manufacturer's reputation, millions of Galaxy Note 7s from customers are making their way back to the manufacturer for a replacement. While this move may cost Samsung more than a billion US dollars, they had to take the initiative after 35 smartphones around the world blew up while being charged. Samsung has finally provided an explanation behind the exploding Samsung SDI batteries just recently and here is what they said in their official statement

"based on our investigation, we learned that there was an issue with the battery cell. An overheating of the battery cell occurred when the anode-to-cathode came into contact which is a very rare manufacturing process error"

Lithium itself is a reactive chemical and the truth is that any smartphone powered by a Li-ion battery does have the potential to explode or catch fire, if there's a short circuit. In case of the Note 7's battery however, some of the batteries provided by Samsung SDI had an inherent manufacturing flaw which resulted in overheating. The overheating led to multiple Li-ion cells cracking open, causing a thermal runaway. So if you have already bought a Note 7, it's time to take it back to the South Korean OEM!

Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)

Samsung is yet to declare the official reason as to why a number of their Galaxy Note 7 smartphones started to explode all around the world which led to two recalls and a subsequent discontinuation of the device. However, that hasn't stopped Instrumental from publishing a report on what they believe is the real reason behind the Note 7's hazardous behaviour.

According to them, it's the race to be the slimmest phone around that got the Galaxy Note 7. Simply put, the capacity of the battery was too big to be encased in such a small and slim casing. Apparently, the two separator layers of polymer found within the Note 7's battery was too thin to keep the negative (graphite) and the positive (lithium cobalt oxide) layer apart from each other, even under normal circumstances like pressure from being in a tight pocket. It is only natural that if the positive and the negative layers ever came into direct contact with each other, that would continue to generate heat until the entire phone exploded into flames.

They also went on to state that the engineers at Samsung definitely knew there would be some risk associated with choosing design over safety here, but went with it anyway. A smaller battery would have been safer, but it wouldn't be enough to power the beastly specs which the Note 7 boasted of. A race to release the smartphone prior to the Apple iPhone 7 might have also contributed to the cause, given that we are guessing the batteries did not go through sufficient testing to be branded as "safe."

Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)

After what has been roughly three and a half months since the Galaxy Note 7 was discontinued, Samsung has finally disclosed its findings regarding the cause behind the exploding smartphone. Just like previously thought, Samsung blames the batteries used inside the Note 7 for causing the safety hazards that the phone did, back when it was still being sold.

700 engineers worked with 200,000 Note 7 smartphones and 30,000 batteries used in those phones to reach the following conclusions.

1. The first batch of batteries which were supplied by Samsung SDI had curved corners which resulted in the electrodes inside the casing to bend. As they bent and came into contact with each other due to heat or pressure, fire and explosion became inevitable in certain cases.

2. After the first recall, Samsung equipped the next batch of Note 7s with batteries supplied by Amperex Technology Ltd. In a bizarre coincidence, these batteries also turned out to be faulty and began to catch fire as a result of inadequate welding and subsequent internal short-circuits. This was probably brought on due to the tremendous pressure of manufacturing millions of batteries in an impossibly short time.

As Dong-jin Koh, the chief of Samsung Mobiles explained all this in a press meeting, he also confirmed that the Galaxy S8 will indeed be delayed this year, and therefore, we will not see the device at the MWC next month.

Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)


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