Galaxy Note7 is the most talked about phone release in years — unfortunately for Samsung however, for the wrong reasons. Anyone travelling on a plane since November anywhere in the world will have heard about the overheating issues and the global recall.
Since then Samsung has been doing everything it can to reassure, calm, and save its image. It seems the corporation's latest tactic after some hip adverts and an (almost) slick press conference is to just try to get everyone to forget, move on, and focus on its new product, the Galaxy S8.
There is one thing they can’t just sweep under the carpet — 4.3 million Smartphones and the tonnes of precious resources they contain. For the past 5 months we have been trying to get Samsung to tell us what they are going to do. Thousands of you phoned them up, sent them emails, wrote on their wall, damn, we even crashed their event in Barcelona to remind Samsung that putting your company on silent mode doesn’t get the job done.
Greenpeace activists protest at the World Mobile Congress in Spain, February 2017.
Why does it matter?
Every year global corporations like Samsung extract millions of tonnes of resources at a huge human and environmental cost for our planet, to make millions of Smartphones, designed not to last with these same resources then wasted instead of being properly recycled or reused. With Note7, Samsung has a huge opportunity to do things differently: walk the talk and be the innovative leader it claims to be by recycling or reusing the Galaxy Note7.
On 29 March Samsung will reveal its latest in a long line of new models, the S8 — at a no expense spared, star-spangled event in the heart of New York City. A cynical attempt to dangle a shiny new toy in front of us with a few uninspiring new features to try and make us forget about the fiery mess that was the Note7.
Well, Samsung, we haven’t forgotten and we are still waiting.
There have been rumours in the press about refurbishments, vague statements about meeting local regulations or “hearing people's demands” but still no publicly available plan. Samsung, instead of just burying your head in the sand and trying to distract our attention with yet another new model, if you really want to put the Note7 fiasco behind you and help us all move on, just show us the plan.
Robin Perkins is a Senior Global Campaigner at Greenpeace East Asia.