The Phone that Explodes

Spontaneous combustion is real: just look at your new Samsung Galaxy Note 7 for evidence!

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The Phone that Explodes

Michael Bakshandeh, Senior Editor-In-Chief, Science/Technology/Entertainment

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In an unfortunate sequence of events for Samsung, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 has been recalled for numerous fires. Many reports of phone batteries overheating, blowing up, and catching on fire have caused more than hysteria. The explosions have been, well, “inconvenient” to say the least. The Note has been implicated in car and airplanes fires that have caused passengers to evacuate the plane just to extinguish the fire. Let’s not even discuss the personal injuries caused by “pocket explosions.”

The Samsung Note 7 was supposed to be the Android response to the popular iPhone 7 recently released to the general public. One of the Note’s greatest claims to fame was its long battery life, but it appears that their apparent strength serves as their weakest link. The integrity and safety of the components and the manufacturers will ultimately determine the safety, fate, and evolution of these products.

It’s perfectly normal to wonder why exactly this “explosion crisis” is happening. To find the root of the problem, we’re going to have to travel inside the Note. Recent studies have shown that the effect is linked to the lithium battery that is used in the phone. Looking into the lithium battery’s past, it’s not too difficult to see how problematic these batteries have been; this is not due to the technology itself, but due to the volatile nature of the battery.

In case you hadn’t heard, hoverboards were recently recalled due to spontaneous fires as well. Shockingly, or not, the hoverboards also relied on lithium batteries as a source of power. Some other recent “explosion” crises include the Tesla Car and the 2006 Dell Notepads. Take a guess what powered these appliances!

The solution to this problem is fairly simple: just improve the safety precautions. With poorly made electric circuitry, the possibility of a lithium-battery phone exploding is imminent. Samsung is currently offering new phones or exchanges for Notes bought before September 15th and for those whose serial numbers are posted on their website as well.

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