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Samsung tells users to turn off phones as handsets continue to explode

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Tom Fordy
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We’re always being told our smartphones are bad for us, but that’s usually because of compulsive Facebook checking and your sugar-like addiction to Candy Crush, not because your handset might explode mid-conversation.

That has been a very real problem facing Samsung users, after reports of the Galaxy Notebook 7 overheating, smoking, and in some cases spontaneously combusting.

Now the problem is so bad – with even Samsung’s “safe” replacement phones going up in smoke – that the South Korean tech giant has issued a statement urging owners to switch off and seek an exchange or refund.

The phone launched in August as the major rival to Apple's iPhone, but Samsung had recalled 2.5million phones by September, after initial reports of the Note 7 catching fire while they charged, or shortly after.

Samsung blamed the defect on a battery supplier, and issued replacements with a different battery, assuring users that the phones were now safe.

Then last week – after Samsung claimed to replaced 60 per cent of Note 7 handsets in South Korea and the US - a replacement phone began smoking on a US plane, causing the plane to be evacuated before taking off. There have several other reports, including a man in Richmond, Virginia whose replacement phone exploded on his nightstand while he slept.

We’ll stick to a good old fashioned alarm, thanks very much.

Now Samsung has withdrawn all of the Note 7 handsets and stopped production. Though only a limited number have been sold in the UK, as the product recall happened on the same day the phones went on sale here.

For anyone who does have an original Note 7 or replacement, return to your supplier, where you should be able to exchange your phone. EE, for instance, has offered to replace the Note 7 with a handset of your choice.

It’s been a major disaster for Samsung, with shares dropping 7.5 per cent - shaving a whopping $18bn off the company’s overall value.

In the meantime, if you are looking forward to a new Galaxy Note then hold fire - well, you know what we mean.

Picture Credit: CNN

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Tom Fordy

Tom Fordy is a London-based writer. He is former men's magazine editor and is now works as a lifestyle and entertainment journalist and opinionated beard for hire. His interests include the great literary works of the 20th century, New Wave European cinema and the career of Hulk Hogan. Follow Tom on Twitter: @TheTomFordy

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