Why Samsung Is Selling Refurbished Galaxy Note 7 'Fandom Edition'

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Why Samsung Is Selling Refurbished Galaxy Note 7 'Fandom Edition'

Samsung has made the rather surprising—and perhaps even ill-advised—move to release refurbished models of its Galaxy Note 7 big-screen smartphone. This is the same Galaxy Note 7 that cost the company billions of dollars when it had to recall all examples of the handset because of burning and exploding batteries. It will have many of the same features, minus the defective batteries, that were included in the original Galaxy Note 7, such as the fast processor and impressive design. So, what was Samsung thinking when it made this move? This slide show will discuss those reasons and what's in an allegedly improved smartphone dubbed the Galaxy Note 7 Fandom Edition.

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Look for it in Korea First

Samsung confirmed it plans to bring back the Galaxy Note 7. A recent report in The Wall Street Journal says the handset will go on sale first in South Korea, Samsung’s home country, and in other countries soon after. Samsung will make hundreds of thousands of units available in Korea, according to the Journal, and offer “modest inventory” in other countries such as the U.S.

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It Will Have All-New Batteries, of Course

To be clear, Samsung isn’t planning to use the older batteries in the refreshed models. Rather, they will run on the new batteries the company is producing. Samsung is testing and analyzing those batteries to ensure safety. So far, the effort seems to have worked: There have been no reported battery problems with the Galaxy S8 line.

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Overheating Batteries Were Reported in 330 Handsets

It’s important to note that not many people experienced battery problems in the older models. In fact, Samsung has said that of the 3 million Note 7 units sold worldwide last year, only 330 suffered from battery flaws.

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The Design Is Unchanged

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 hasn't been redesigned. The only thing different in the refurbished models is the new batteries. Those who liked the design of the Galaxy Note 7 should be pleased with the refurbished model.

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What About Galaxy Note 8?

Samsung's timing for the release of refurbished Note 7s seems odd. The company is rumored to be just weeks away from introducing the Galaxy Note 8, in August, to hit store shelves soon after. However, Samsung insiders have said they believe the Galaxy Note 7 will appeal to certain consumers and ultimately help the company recoup some of its billions in losses.

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What Happens to the Galaxy Note 5?

Interestingly, the big loser here could be the Galaxy Note 5. That handset, which Samsung released in 2015, still sells quite well around the world. Consumers like the idea of using a stylus with their big-screen smartphones and, absent the Galaxy Note 7, they’re choosing its predecessor. If the Galaxy Note 7 makes a strong comeback, the Galaxy Note 5 might not remain on the market for long.

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It’s Still a Powerful Handset

The year-old Galaxy Note 7 runs the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820. The processor isn’t as powerful as the Snapdragon 835 in the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+, but it can hold its own with today’s most advanced apps. Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 should deliver ample power for many users, especially those who hated giving up their handsets during the recall.

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There’s No Word on Software

There’s a good chance the Galaxy Note 7 will ship with Android Nougat, although it’s unknown which Samsung applications the smartphone might offer. Specifically, Samsung hasn’t said whether its virtual personal assistant Bixby, which debuted in the Galaxy S8 line, could be included. Samsung also could offer the improved TouchWiz interface, which makes navigating the operating system much easier.

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Samsung Isn't Offering the Note 7 at Fire Sale Prices

In a rather surprising move, Samsung isn’t offering the device at a much lower price. The Galaxy Note 7 is expected to go on sale for around $600 in Korea—a high price in today’s smartphone market. Pricing in the U.S. and elsewhere has not been announced.

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Customers Are Excited

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 might have suffered from its fair share of troubles, but customers are excited about its comeback.Some of those few who held on to their handsets after the recall reportedly now are saying that they’ll ditch them for a refurbished model. Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 might be in for a turnaround.

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