Samsung to disable Galaxy Note 7 devices on December 19

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Samsung to disable Galaxy Note 7 devices on December 19
Image Credit: Cox Media Group Washington News Bureau
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In an effort to get U.S. customers to turn off their devices, Samsung will be issuing a software update next week that will make the Galaxy Note 7 inoperable.

Read more: Florida man sues after Samsung Galaxy Note 7 explodes in pocket

Last software update will disable all Note 7 devices

On Friday, Samsung confirmed that it plans to release the final update for the device on December 19, rendering the Note 7 devices useless. The update will prevent the phones from charging and will “eliminate their ability to work as mobile devices.” 

According to the company, 93% of the Note 7 devices have been turned in after they were recalled three months ago following reports of phones bursting into flames. The phone’s battery was determined to be the issue, and some malfunctioning devices were responsible for fires in homes, cars and, in a few cases, their owner’s pockets or purses.

According to the company, there are roughly 133,000 Galaxy Note7 devices unaccounted for in the United States.

Samsung said in the statement Friday, ‘Together with our carrier partners, we will be notifying consumers through multiple touchpoints to encourage any remaining Galaxy Note7 owners to participate in the program and to take advantage of the financial incentives available.’

Samsung issued a recall for the Note 7 in September. Customers were asked to return the device for a refund or a replacement phone. In October, it expanded the recall in the United States to include all replacement devices the company offered.

The Note 7 is banned on airlines and on other U.S. public transit systems over the fire concerns.

While other carriers have announced when the software update will be passed along to customers, Verizon says it will not release the update that will make phones unusable because of concerns that customers may need the device in the event of an emergency. 

“Verizon will not be taking part in this update because of the added risk this could pose to Galaxy Note 7 users that do not have another device to switch to,” according to a statement from the company. “We will not push a software upgrade that will eliminate the ability for the Note 7 to work as a mobile device in the heart of the holiday travel season. We do not want to make it impossible to contact family, first responders or medical professionals in an emergency situation.”

According to a story from CNET, T-Mobile’s update will come December 27, AT&T’s on January 5 and Sprint’s on Jan. 8.

Read more: New report: Another type of Samsung phone is exploding

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