Samsung, Note 7, Battery, South Korea

Samsung’s Note 7 was arguably one of the biggest failures of smartphone history. One moment, you have a smartphone that is expected to make history and the next, it is making news — in a literally explosive manner. Samsung’s public relations team had a field few months as they struggled to contain the damage and repair the company’s image. While they may have succeeded in their job, South Korea is now moving to tighten regulations to ensure that such events do not take place again.

There has been a lot of debate and finger pointing over why this incident happened. While investigations revealed that the issue could have been caused due to battery problems that pertained to an extra-cozy fit within the smartphone body — the fact remains that either Samsung or its battery making subsidiary should have caught on to the issue during testing. That such a potentially dangerous device managed to get sold en-masse does appear to indicate at least a degree of negligence.

Well, South Korea isn’t having any more of that. The country is tightening regulations around Lithium-ion batteries with an eye towards ensuring that incidents of this nature do not take place in the future.

South Korea’s Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy issued a statement reiterating its commitments to make changes. Vice Minister Jeong Marn-ki told Reuters.

We ask that the industry shares the view that making efforts to ensure safety is equally as critical as developing new products through technological innovation.

The ministry wasn’t particularly forthcoming with details. However, from what we have managed to glean, a close eye would be kept on defective devices and manufacturers would be required to report them to the government. The government is also expected to keep a close watch over Samsung, which from the last rumors I heard, was in talks with third-party testers.

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