Samsung has put the brakes on its replacement program for the Galaxy Note7, halting the roll-out of new handsets to customers in Australia. Anyone with an original or replacement Note7 is being told by Vodafone to return their phones to swap for a Galaxy S7 Edge, or any other phone.
Update: Samsung has issued an official statement on today’s halt:
“Samsung Electronics Australia is aware of a number of incidents involving replacement Galaxy Note7 smartphones. Samsung is conducting a thorough investigation into this matter.
“We continue to move quickly to investigate the reported cases to determine the cause and will provide an update as soon as possible.
“Samsung Electronics Australia is working with its partners. We understand that telecommunications operators and retailers in Australia have paused the supply of replacement Galaxy Note7 smartphones in this country and are providing loan phones to concerned customers.
“Samsung Electronics Australia would like to reassure our customers that we take this matter very seriously. We apologise for any inconvenience and appreciate their patience as we work diligently through this process.”
Here’s an updated statement from Vodafone on the issue:
“Vodafone is pausing the replacement program for the new Samsung Galaxy Note7 following reported incidents overseas.
“From tomorrow, Samsung Galaxy Note7 customers are able to exchange their device for a Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge or another smartphone in stock of equal or less value.
“Customers are encouraged to back-up their data, complete a factory reset to delete all personal information, power-down their device and exchange it at any Vodafone branded store.
Vodafone will continue to keep customers updated on the status of this program as we receive more information from Samsung.”
Telstra and Optus have issued similar statements, with Australia’s two largest telcos saying they have paused replacement shipping and will share more information with customers soon.
“We have temporarily paused shipping replacement Galaxy Note7 smartphones to our customers while Samsung investigates reported incidents in the US. We have asked Samsung to provide us with an update on their investigations as a matter of priority and will update our customers as soon as we learn more.
“In the meantime we are helping customers with loan phones and for those who do not wish to wait for the exchange program to change over to an alternative smartphone.”
“Optus has decided to temporarily suspend the distribution of replacement Samsung Galaxy Note7 handsets pending an investigation by Samsung.
“We will advise customers who are awaiting their replacement Note7 handset of the next steps as soon as we have more information.”