According to report by The New York Times, a couple of Samsung employees recently showed up at Zhang Sitong’s house, a Galaxy Note 7 user in China, whose device suddenly caught fire while saving a friend’s number. He immediately threw it on the ground and told his friend to start filming. Samsung’s representatives offered him a new Note 7 and around $900 in compensation if he keeps the video private, but Mr. Zhang angrily refused.
Only weeks before, even as Samsung recalled more than two million Note 7s in the United States and elsewhere, the company had reassured him and other Chinese customers that the phone was safe.
“They said there was no problem with the phones in China. That’s why I bought a Samsung,” said Mr. Zhang, a 23-year-old former firefighter. “This is an issue of deception. They are cheating Chinese consumers.”
Earlier this week, China’s state-run broadcaster CCTV also criticized the way Samsung tested its phones, and asked whether its claims that the phones were safe and reliable were “fabricated falsehoods.”
“If Samsung continues to violate the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese consumers and continues to refuse to make public the samples used in its testing process as well as the process itself, who would be able to help Chinese consumers find the truth?” the CCTV report said.
Samsung initially claimed the Chinese version of the Note 7 had a different battery and was safe. However, after reports in China of phones catching fire, it finally recalled the Note 7 last week before scrapping the device globally. “The brand has been damaged already,” said Di Jin, research manager in China for IDC, a technology research firm. “It will be really hard for Samsung to regain its market share in the near future.”
Check out the video Samsung tried to prevent from going public in China: