Samsung’s efforts (along with help from carriers) has for the most part succeeded. The company announced last week that it has recovered over 96 percent of the Galaxy Note 7 smartphones that are out in the wild. “Together with our wireless carriers, we have taken aggressive action to limit the remaining phones’ ability to work as mobile devices, further enhancing participation in the recall,” stated Samsung in a press release.
However, that still means that 4 percent of the Galaxy Note 7 devices that were originally sold are still out there in the wild, and they still present a safety hazard. America’s largest wireless carrier, Verizon Wireless, knows this all too well.
"In spite of our best efforts, there are still customers using the recalled phones who have not returned or exchanged their Note 7 to the point of purchase," said a Verizon spokeswoman in an interview this week. "The recalled Note 7s pose a safety risk to our customers and those around them."
Given that Verizon (along with other wireless carriers) have pushed updates to effectively brick the Galaxy Note 7, it appears that these holdouts are simply being stubborn and are actively seeking to escape “capture”. To thwart these reckless users, Verizon is stepping up its takedown efforts. For starters, all calls made from Galaxy Note 7 smartphones will now be routed through customer service instead of making it to their intended location. So, if you thought that you could just dial up Papa Johns and order a pizza, you’ll instead be talking to a Verizon representative who will likely try to persuade you to “see the light”.
The only exception to this rule is with regards to 911 emergency calls. These calls will still go through to their intended destination, which is definitely understandable.
But it doesn’t end there. Verizon says that it might even start billing remaining Galaxy Note 7 owners for the full retail price of the device, given that they have already been reimbursed for the device’s cost. So, if appealing to a person’s sense of reason and accountability doesn’t work, hitting them in the wallet is sure to make them start to question their decision to “fight the man”.
For any of you folks out there still nursing a Galaxy Note 7, it isn’t worth it. Get rid of it ASAP.