Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure may be taking an overly optimistic view on Samsung’s damaging worldwide recall of the Galaxy Note 7.
A burning question
In a new interview with Fortune, he said the recall won’t affect Samsung long term.
“We start shipping the new Notes this week already,” Claure said in an interview with Fortune on Monday. “We’re going to pick them up and six months from now nobody will remember that there was a Note 7 recall.”
“Stuff like this happens,” he adds. “It has always happened. The world that we live in today just exposes it a thousand times more (with) the Internet, social media, and all that. But having issues with phones has been happening for quite a long time.”
The recall covers around 1 million handsets in the United States. The Consumer Product Safety Commission said there has been 92 reports of the handset overheating and exploding. That’s along with 26 reports of burns and 55 reports of property damage in the country.
Samsung says that replacement devices could be available later this month. The issue apparently stemmed from a defective batch of batteries.
Interestingly, Claure said that buyers haven’t seemed to be too concerned with returning the handset:
The challenge has been getting Sprint customers who bought a Note 7 to bring them back, the CEO said. “Consumers have a way of going about their business,” he says. “They look at 1 in a million explodes or 10 in a million explodes.”
While only time will tell if Claure is correct, the recall could cost Samsung $5 billion in revenue this year according to some analysts. That’s not exactly chump change.
And can you imagine what the publicity would be like if something similar happened to an Apple handset?