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Samsung Galaxy Note 7
Business & Finance Series: Expert Comment

Was Samsung right to abandon the Note 7?

Professor ManMohan Sodhi, an expert in supply chain management at Cass Business School, recently wrote for BBC News about some of the issues surrounding Samsung’s recall of its Galaxy 7 smartphone.

by Amy Ripley (Senior Communications Officer)

“As Oscar Wilde would have said, to have one product recall may be regarded as a misfortune, to have two looks like carelessness.

The electronics industry faces an increasing amount of power being shrunk into vanishingly small circuits. These circuits get hot and, sometimes, catch fire.

Competition means there is less time available to test products, and many companies have had misfortunes. But Samsung offered a false alternative too quickly. That is carelessness.

To fight this image, Samsung has announced a permanent stop to the production of the Note 7, following a temporary stop earlier. This gives it room to redesign a brand new product.

But this will only add to Samsung's woes. It will be viewed as panic in the boardroom.

A full recall of existing Notes as well as those yet unsold will be an environmental nightmare besides being economically challenging to the entire supply chain - despite the fact that the vast majority of these phones would have remained in full working order for their working lives.

No, like Volkswagen and its diesel emissions scandal, Samsung should have stuck it out with the Note 7 until the Note 8 became available.

It still has to identify and publicise what caused the phones to overheat if it is to recover its reputation.

And it could have offered free stress tests and compensation vouchers to Note 7 owners, and have convinced the airlines the vetted handsets were safe.

The engineers could have handled the technology problem - panicking was not the solution.”

This article was originally published on BBC News and you can read the full piece here.

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