Samsung pushed suppliers to meet tighter deadlines for an earlier launch of the ill-fated Galaxy Note 7 after hearing that the iPhone 7 would have no major design changes, according to a new report published today.

The Bloomberg report cites multiple sources indicating that executives at Samsung saw rumors of Apple's apparent lack of innovation this year as an opportunity, and quickly approved a slew of new features for the Note 7 after getting hold of an early version of the device.

applevsamsung
According to one person familiar with the matter, the select group of top managers "gushed over the upgrades and praised each other's work", and approved a launch date 10 days earlier than last year. Samsung's unveiling was August 3 this year, compared with August 13 in 2015.

As the launch date approached, employees at Samsung and suppliers stretched their work hours and made do with less sleep. Though it’s not unusual to have a scramble, suppliers were under more pressure than usual this time around and were pushed harder than by other customers, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter. One supplier said it was particularly challenging to work with Samsung employees this time, as they repeatedly changed their minds about specs and work flow. Some Samsung workers began sleeping in the office to avoid time lost in commuting, the supplier said. Samsung declined to comment on whether deadlines were moved, reiterating that products are only introduced after proper testing.

When the phones got into customers' hands, reports of exploding handsets began. According to Bloomberg, executives at Samsung headquarters were in shock. Internally, there was a debate over whether to do a full-blown recall or to take less dramatic steps, like a battery replacement program. In the end, Samsung mobile chief decided on a full recall.

Samsung has drawn criticism for the steps it took next. Apparently driven by good intentions, the company announced the recall plans publicly before working out how millions of consumers in 10 countries would actually get replacements.

Then it sent mixed signals about what customers should do. First, Samsung told people to shut off their phones and stop using them. A few days later, it offered a software patch to prevent batteries from overheating, signaling consumers could keep using the phones.

But Samsung moved so fast it got ahead of regulators who help organize such programs. In the U.S. for example, companies are supposed to notify the Consumer Product Safety Commission within 24 hours of uncovering problems. Instead, Samsung went public on its own and consumers didn't have clear guidance on how to exchange their phones.

Asked to confirm that launch deadlines for the Note 7 were shifted, Samsung told Bloomberg that release dates are determined by "the proper completion of the development process and the readiness of the product for the market."

Meanwhile sales of Apple's iPhone 7 appear to have exceeded analysts' expectations, particularly demand for the larger 7 Plus, which was all but sold out across the globe on launch day. The company's choice of black handset color options has also piqued interest among consumers, despite concerns about the lack of a headphone jack on the new devices.

You can read more of the Bloomberg story here.

Tag: Samsung

Top Rated Comments

FFR Avatar
67 months ago
"The chairman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission was more explicit when his agency announced an official recall on Thursday. He said the phone’s battery was slightly too big for its compartment and the tight space pinched the battery, causing a short circuit. “Clearly, they missed something,” said Anthea Lai, an analyst with Bloomberg Intelligence. “They were rushing to beat Apple and they made a mistake.”"

So a design flaw.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jayducharme Avatar
67 months ago
Blindly driven by good intentions
I think "profits" was misspelled as "good intentions".
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Telos101 Avatar
67 months ago
Samsung has had fridges explode (http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-44470) and washing machines start fires (http://abc11.com/news/consumers-claim-some-samsung-washing-machines-explode/1056429/) but sure, blame the “dull” iPhone and talk about Samsung’s reputation of high quality products.

Poor journalism.
Lol, the Bloomberg report cites multiple sources and internal memos.

Go back to bed.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
fitshaced Avatar
67 months ago
Battery too big for the compartment? Try removing the headphone jack.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Legend of Ive Avatar
67 months ago
I don't know why anyone in the right night would buy a Samsung phone. The software is ****, if you're going to buy an android, go buy a nexus. You get 2 years software update.

Samsung is beats on steroids, they charge you flagship price the drop you support after a year
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
keysofanxiety Avatar
67 months ago
This event is likely to tarnish Samsung's reputation for some time and one of the reasons it'd take something special for me not buy an Apple device. Boring or not, I'd rather something that is reliable and has been appropriately tested before shipping.

If you're tempted to cite touch-gate, iPhone 4 signal, and bending phone issues as being proof that Apple's QA has slipped, that's nowhere near comparable to exploding phones.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

General Apps Messages

Android iMessage Competitor Puts Pressure on Apple

Friday July 30, 2021 3:15 am PDT by
Google and the three major U.S. carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, will all support a new communications protocol on Android smartphones starting in 2022, a move that puts pressure on Apple to adopt a new cross-platform messaging standard and may present a challenge to iMessage. Verizon recently announced that it is planning to adopt Messages by Google as its default messaging...
iphone 13 teal with text

Apple Begins Preparation for iPhone 13 Production Ahead of Fall Launch

Monday June 28, 2021 3:29 am PDT by
We're just a few months away from when Apple is expected to reveal the 2021 iPhone, dubbed the "iPhone 13." In preparation for its launch, it has been pulling in shipments of different components needed to produce the new iPhones, according to a report from DigiTimes. In years past, Apple released its latest iPhone lineup, alongside a new Apple Watch, during a September event at Apple Park....
studio buds family

Beats Studio Buds Debuting Today With Active Noise Cancellation, Stemless Design, and More for $150

Monday June 14, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
We've seen a lot of teasers about the Beats Studio Buds over the past month since they first showed up in Apple's beta software updates, and today they're finally official. The Beats Studio Buds are available to order today in red, white, and black ahead of a June 24 ship date, and they're priced at $149.99. The Studio Buds are the first Beats-branded earbuds to truly compete with AirPods...
bluetti eb70 main

MacRumors Giveaway: Win a Bluetti EB70 Portable Power Station and 200W Solar Panel

Friday September 3, 2021 11:13 am PDT by
For this week's giveaway, we've teamed up with MAXOAK to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win a Bluetti portable power station and an accompanying solar panel. Bluetti makes a range of portable power station options that are useful for camping, emergencies, power outages, off-grid living, and similar situations. The Bluetti EB70 is a solid middle of the road option that offers 716Wh and...
apple privacy

Apple Publishes FAQ to Address Concerns About CSAM Detection and Messages Scanning

Monday August 9, 2021 1:50 am PDT by
Apple has published a FAQ titled "Expanded Protections for Children" which aims to allay users' privacy concerns about the new CSAM detection in iCloud Photos and communication safety for Messages features that the company announced last week. "Since we announced these features, many stakeholders including privacy organizations and child safety organizations have expressed their support of...
macos catalina legacy system extension alert

Apple Begins Warning Users That 'Legacy System Extensions' Won't Work With a Future Version of macOS

Wednesday March 25, 2020 9:53 am PDT by
Apple has shared a new support document that indicates kernel extensions — which it calls "legacy system extensions" — will not be compatible with a future version of macOS because they "aren't as secure or reliable as modern alternatives."System extensions are a category of software that works in the background to extend the functionality of your Mac. Some apps install kernel extensions, which...
General Spotify Feature

Spotify Pauses Plans to Add AirPlay 2 Support to iOS App [Update: Spotify Clarifies]

Friday August 6, 2021 9:07 am PDT by
See update at bottom of article Spotify this week confirmed that its plans to add AirPlay 2 support to its iOS app have been placed on indefinite hiatus. In an online discussion forum post, a Spotify representative said the streaming music service had been working on supporting AirPlay 2, but the company has paused the efforts "for now" due to "audio driver compatibility issues." The...
youtube apple tv

YouTube Discontinuing 3rd-Generation Apple TV App, AirPlay Still Available

Wednesday February 3, 2021 3:09 pm PST by
YouTube is planning to stop supporting its YouTube app on the third-generation Apple TV models, where YouTube has long been available as a channel option. A 9to5Mac reader received a message about the upcoming app discontinuation, which is set to take place in March.Starting early March, the YouTube app will no longer be available on Apple TV (3rd generation). You can still watch YouTube on...
os x mountain lion macs 16x9 2

Apple Makes OS X Lion and Mountain Lion Free to Download

Wednesday June 30, 2021 12:19 pm PDT by
Apple recently dropped the $19.99 fee for OS X Lion and Mountain Lion, making the older Mac updates free to download, reports Macworld. Apple has kept OS X 10.7 Lion and OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion available for customers who have machines limited to the older software, but until recently, Apple was charging $19.99 to get download codes for the updates. As of last week, these updates no...
Pixel Stand 23W 668x445

Google Pixel 6 Rumored to Support 23W Wireless Charging, Beating iPhone 12's MagSafe

Wednesday September 1, 2021 1:54 am PDT by
Google is rumored to be working on a new wireless charging stand that could deliver 23W of charging power to its upcoming Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro phones, according to a leaked inventory image published by Android Police. Image via Android Police. If true, that would beat the iPhone 12's maximum 15W wireless charging speed (or 12W on ‌iPhone 12 mini‌) using Apple's MagSafe charger, and...