This voluntary recall was made official by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission. “Consumers should immediately stop using and power down the recalled Galaxy Note 7 devices purchased before September 15, 2016,” is stated on the official recall notice.
The batteries in Galaxy Note 7 phones are catching fire because the highly-flammable lithium packs inside are short circuiting. This causes the liquid to heat up faster, making the battery packs more likely to explode. Part of the problem is too much pressure on the battery, caused by the push to squeeze more power into a smaller phone. The thin plastic layer that separates the positive and negative components of the battery gets punctured, resulting in a short circuit. It is estimated that about 1,000 phones are defective.
As of this blog, and after only one month on the market, confirmed incidences include 92 in the United States, plus at least 17 in Korea, 1 in Taiwan and 1 in Australia. The 92 reports in the U.S., includes both 26 instances of burn injuries and 55 of fires causing damage to property. Most incidences occurred when the phones were plugged in and recharging, often overnight.
Galaxy Note 7 users can return their phones to Samsung for a full refund, obtain a different device, or get a replacement when the new Note 7 is released by September 21.