If you start typing the words “Note battery” into Google, it’s autofill suggestions are the kind of thing that keeps Samsung PRs awake at night:
So they’ll be thrilled to see the gradual emergence of another battery controversy – albeit one that is nowhere near as damaging as its predecessor.
While the Note 7 could actually explode, the Note 8 may merely stop charging and switching on, apparently. When completely drained, the phone fails to respond to charge enough to start – even if it goes through the motions of physically warming up or showing the charging icon. That’s bad but considerably less problematic than its predecessor: when it comes to batteries, it’s definitely preferable to go out with a whimper over a bang.
The problem seems to be largely concentrated in the US, suggesting it relates to the Snapdragon 835 processor, as non-US models have an equivalent Exynos chip running the show.
Samsung has acknowledged the issue but has not gone far beyond accepting that it exists. In a statement to PC World’s German edition, the company said that: “Samsung takes all reports of this kind, of course, seriously. We have received only a very small number of customer inquiries that can be linked to charge management.
“Unfortunately, we can only comment on the matter further if we have more detailed information about the affected devices.”
How small is small? The Note 7 debacle was only said to affect some 70 handsets in the US, though of course, that was a significantly more pressing issue. Without confirmation from Samsung either way, users have been left speculating as to what may cause the bug, with cold weather or a botched firmware update being the most likely candidates.
Like the Note 4 battery issue before it, the Note 8’s woes don’t sound particularly bad – just the standard kind of bugs people get when running smartphones. But if there’s one phrase Samsung would prefer customers forgot, it’s “Samsung Galaxy Note battery problems”.
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