Samsung U.S. President: Sorry About That Whole Exploding Note 7 Battery Thing; New Phones Coming 9/21

Yesterday, two weeks after halting all sales of the Galaxy Note 7 following reports of exploding and overheating batteries, Samsung and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission finally made the recall official yesterday afternoon. Now, the head of Samsung’s U.S. division is standing outside your window with a boombox over his head, playing an apology tune in the hope that you won’t go running into the arms of Apple.

In a video statement released by the company, Samsung U.S. President Tim Baxter (no, not Ted Baxter) did his best “my bad” to the million or so Note 7 owners who now have potentially dangerous paperweights until the non-exploding replacements come in.

“With battery cell defects in some of our Note 7 phones [NOTE: “Some” = 97% of Note 7 devices sold in the U.S.], we did not meet the standard of excellence that you expect and deserve,” says Baxter. “For that, we apologize, especially to those of you who were personally affected by this.”

This wouldn’t be a corporate apology if it didn’t include a line about how seriously the company takes this issue.

“We take seriously our responsibility to address your concerns about safety,” continues the Baxter, “and we will work every day to earn back your trust through a number of unprecedented actions and with the extraordinary support of our carrier partners, suppliers, and the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission.”

Samsung took some heat before the recall for gong out on its own and effectively declaring a recall without having gone through official channels in the countries where the Note 7 was sold, and without having shown that its replacement phones would not overheat or explode like the original device has in at least 92 instances known to Samsung.

Baxter says Samsung did notify the CPSC of the defect in the Note 7 battery before it issued a “global directive” to stop sales immediately. Even though the exchange program wasn’t the official recall remedy until last night, he claims that 130,000 Note 7s have already been turned in.

“To be clear, the Note 7 with the new battery is safe,” explains Baxter. “The battery cell issue is resolved,” a claim he says has been confirmed by an independent expert on lithium-ion batteries.

Samsung is restating its previous request that Note 7 users power down their phones and and return them to the retailer or carrier where they purchased them.

As for when the new phones are coming, Baxter claims that “new Note 7 phones will be available for exchange no later than next Wednesday, Sept. 21.”

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