Samsung phone fire in
China not caused by battery: supplier
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[September 19, 2016]
SEOUL/BEIJING (Reuters) - A supplier
to Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said on Monday that its battery does not
appear to have caused a Galaxy Note 7 smartphone to ignite in China,
after Chinese media reported one of the handsets caught fire.
The incident comes amid a recall of the Note 7 phones across the globe
including South Korea and the United States due to faulty batteries
causing the devices to catch fire while charging or in normal use.
Samsung has said it has sold 2.5 million phones equipped with the
Late on Sunday, Chinese online financial magazine Caixin cited an
internet user's report that their Note 7 phone, bought from JD.com Inc <JD.O>,
had caught fire in what appeared to be the first report in China of a
fire involving the handset.
Amperex Technology Limited (ATL) said it conducted a joint investigation
with Samsung on the phone in question and determined the incident was
not directly linked to a battery made by the China-based firm.
"According to the burn marks on the sample, we surmise that the source
of the heating comes from outside the battery, and it's very likely that
there was an external factor causing the heating problem," the battery
maker said in a statement.
An ATL official confirmed to Reuters one of its batteries was in the
Note 7 phone that reportedly caught fire and that the heating problem
was caused by something other than the battery.
A person familiar with the matter told Reuters the phone was damaged by
an external heat source, possibly an induction oven or a fan heater. The
person was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter and so
declined to be identified.
A Samsung spokeswoman referred Reuters to ATL's statement and declined
to comment further.
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An employee poses for photographs with Samsung Electronics' Galaxy
Note 7 new smartphone at its store in Seoul, South Korea, September
2, 2016. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji/File Photo
JD.com said it referred the case to Samsung.
Samsung last week announced a recall of 1,858 Note 7 phones in China but those
devices were products distributed before the official Sept. 1 launch. The
company said the phones sold through the official launch used batteries
different from those in reported fires.
ATL is owned by Japanese components maker TDK Corp.
(Reporting by Se Young Lee in SEOUL, Paul Carsten in BEIJING and Sijia Jiang in
HONG KONG; Editing by Christopher Cushing)
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