A few weeks ago I wrote an article about the Samsung Note 7 and how it was not allowed to be turned on or charged during flight. Since then, Samsung has pulled the literal plug on the Note 7 with a recall of the device and has ceased its production. Samsung’s stock has plummeted, its reputation is in flux, and as of now there aren’t any plans for a replacement device.
When I posted on this topic, I asked how airlines could ensure the safety of its passengers simply by making an announcement that the phone had to be turned off the duration of the flight. One of reader responded with the following: I’m not sure what more you’re expecting to be done here. They aren’t going to start checking every cell phone brought onboard a plane. In addition to that impossible task of checking every phone, new non-explodey Note 7s are already being sold again.
I concluded that it couldn’t have been such a big problem if they still allowed the phones on the planes. Indeed it is. The device, whether the old model or the upgraded one, has been banned from all U.S. flights. Besides losing billions from the recall, Samsung still cannot pinpoint the cause of the phone overheating. The extent of my scientific knowledge of batteries dates back to high school physics so clearly I am not the authority on the issue. I will say that lithium-ion batteries grounded the Dreamliner which is why it is not surprising that similar batteries could affect a powerful device like the Note 7.