SAMSUNG said its upcoming Galaxy S8 smartphone could be delayed this spring in the wake of last year’s exploding-phone disaster.
Confirming reports late last week, Samsung said faulty batteries from two suppliers were to blame for the Galaxy Note 7’s susceptibility to overheating, catching fire and even exploding, reports the New York Post.
The flaws wiped $5.3 billion off the South Korean electronics giant’s operating profit, although it said strong demand for its component chips is more than offsetting costs of the debacle.
Samsung mobile chief Koh Dong-jin said procedures have been put in place to avoid a repeat of the fires as the South Korean firm prepares to launch the Galaxy S8, its first premium handset since the Note 7’s demise.
“The lessons of this incident are deeply reflected in our culture and process,” Koh told reporters at a press briefing. “Samsung Electronics will be working hard to regain consumer trust.”
Koh said the Galaxy S8 would not be unveiled at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona beginning Feb. 27, the traditional forum for Galaxy S series launches.
He did not comment on when the company planned to launch the handset, though analysts expect it to start selling by April.
Investors have said Samsung needs to reassure consumers that it is on top of the Note 7 problem and can be trusted to fix it.
Samsung’s reputation took a hammering after it announced a recall of fire-prone Note 7s, only for reports to emerge that replacement devices also caught fire. Images of melted Samsung devices spread on social media and airlines banned travelers from carrying them on flights.
The handset, Samsung’s answer to Apple Inc.’s iPhones, was withdrawn from sale in October less than two months after its launch, in one of the biggest failures in tech history.