Note 7 fiasco: Samsung offers alternatives like Galaxy S7, S7 Edge to appease India customers

Samsung Electronics has offered alternative phones to its India customers who had pre-ordered its flagship Galaxy Note 7 devices, in a bid to appease loyal clients in one of its largest smartphone markets.


Samsung Electronics has offered alternative phones to its India customers who had pre-ordered its flagship Galaxy Note 7 devices, in a bid to appease loyal clients in one of its largest smartphone markets. India is one of the world's largest and fastest growing smartphone markets and a critical one for Samsung as it is the No. 1 player in the nation with a roughly 25 percent market share.

The device that had been set to go on sale in India in early September ended up not getting to any Indian customers after it failed to resolve overheating problems which caused some of the phones to ignite. Samsung had officially launched the Note 7 on 11 August at Rs 59,900. It was open for pre-orders. For those who pre-booked the device, Samsung India sent out an email apologising for the delay, alongside a few SMS acknowledgements promising to make up for the delay with free VR headset and apps.

In a release late on Friday it said for those who had pre-booked devices, in lieu of the Note 7 it would offer customers either its Galaxy S7, or S7 Edge devices. It also offered affected clients a free set of its virtual reality headsets, a free pair of wireless headphones, a voucher worth about $50, along with a free one-time screen replacement in case of any damage to the new smartphone within a year, the report adds.

In a separate statement Samsung also questioned analyst estimates on the extent of the impact on revenue in India from the Note 7 debacle. "We can confirm that contrary to these reports, we are headed for record sales of mobile phones this year," the company said in the statement.

Earlier on Friday, Samsung said however that it expected to take a hit to its operating profit of about $3 billion over the next two quarters due to the discontinuation of the Galaxy Note 7.

We reported earlier this week, another area of concern is that in the grey market, the Note 7 is still available. Some shop keepers in Mumbai are offering mixed responses. One vendor we spoke to said he still has the Note 7 in stock at Rs 56,000 and promises that it comes with the replaced battery. It didn’t sound like he was aware of the recall by Samsung.

Some others said that they never had the device in stock. In Delhi though, a source said the device isn’t available but ‘can be made available’ for Rs 58,000. While another vendor said it is available for Rs 56,000.

Shop keepers in India’s grey market still stocking Note 7 is a cause for worry.

With input from Reuters


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