Three Australian Airlines Ban Galaxy Note 7 Users From Charging On Flights

While the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration considers banning Samsung's Galaxy Note 7 handset outright from passenger aircraft, three airlines in Australia—Qantas, Jetstar, and Virgin Australia—have decided to continue letting the potentially explosive gadget on board, so long as passengers don't use or charge them during flight.

The usage ban stems from reports of Galaxy Note 7 devices overheating while charging and exploding into flames. In one recent incident that made headlines, a Galaxy Note 7 caught fire in a hotel room, causing $1,400 in damage in burned bed sheets, charred carpet, and other things that needed replaced. Samsung agreed to replace the handset and pay the full hotel bill, but the real damage is to the company's reputation and that of the Galaxy Note 7.

Galaxy Note 7

Samsung has issued a global recall of the fire-prone smartphone, so it's understandable that airlines would be hesitant to allow passengers from using them on flights. As it pertains to Quantas, Jetstar, and Virgin Australia, passengers can bring their Galaxy Note 7 handsets with them when boarding a flight, but they aren't allowed to plug them into flight entertainment systems with USB ports.

"Following Samsung Australia's recall of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 personal electronic device we are requesting that passengers who own them do not switch on or charge them in flight," a Qantas spokesman told Reuters.

It's an unfortunate situation all around. Other than the Galaxy Note 7's pesky penchant for erupting into flames, it's a really nice smartphone. However, the recall is estimated to negatively impact Samsung's second half operating profit by $740 million.