Date
29 May 2017
Mobile service operators have announced plans for handset replacement and refund for existing Note 7 owners. Photos: Reuters, HKEJ
Mobile service operators have announced plans for handset replacement and refund for existing Note 7 owners. Photos: Reuters, HKEJ

Samsung, mobile firms unveil Note 7 replacement and refund plans

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 smartphones will no longer be sold in Hong Kong and Macau, effective immediately, in line with the Korean technology giant’s decision to scrap the model worldwide two months after its launch.

Samsung Electronics Hong Kong said arrangements for handset replacement and refund for existing Note 7 owners will be announced by Friday, while local mobile service operators have already unveiled plans for current users, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.

Samsung announced the recall of 2.5 million Note 7 units in early September following numerous reports of the phones catching fire, and on Tuesday it finally pulled the plug on the device, Reuters said.

The decision to scrap the Note 7 came after fresh reports of fires in replacement devices prompted new warnings from regulators, phone carriers and airlines, the news agency said.

China Mobile Hong Kong said customers who have purchased Note 7 handsets from them could obtain a full refund from now until Nov. 9.

Wilson Communications Ltd. said it will also offer a full refund for buyers of the problematic handset from its stores on or before Nov. 10.

SmarTone Telecommunications Holdings Ltd. (00315.HK) said customers who have ordered the handset could get a refund, while those who are already in possession of the handset would have to liaise with Samsung by themselves.

HKT (06823.HK) said it could arrange a refund or replacement for other handsets for its customers, but said it has yet to hear from Samsung.

CSL said on its Facebook page that those who bought a Note 7 handset could opt to replace it with another handset.

Hutchison Telecommunications Hong Kong Holdings Ltd. (00215.HK) said it would immediately suspend Note 7 sales, while arrangements for refunds and replacements will be announced in due course.

Consumer Council chief executive Gilly Wong Fung-han said the watchdog has so far received around 160 complaints relating to the handset model.

Wong expects the number of complaints will go up, adding that Samsung’s release of information about the handset has been inadequate and slow.

A spokesperson for the Office of the Communications Authority said it has no statutory power to order Samsung to recall its products or cease sales, and that said arrangements made by Samsung would be its own decision.

[Chinese version 中文版]

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