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How to tell if a Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is safe

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Editor's note, October 12th, 2016, 05:00AM ET: On September 2nd, 2016, Samsung issued a recall on the Galaxy Note 7 because of a safety concern with the battery. The company halted sales and recalled all 2.5 million devices it manufactured. It then issued replacement devices that were deemed to be safe for use by both Samsung and the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. Unfortunately, it turns out that those devices were no safer than the first run and presented many of the same risks. As a result, Samsung has been forced to recall those and is stopping production on the Note 7. You can read more about the recall and the events that have transpired in our Galaxy Note 7 recall Story Stream. You can no longer tell if your Galaxy Note 7 is safe, and all devices should be returned for a refund or exchange for another phone.

Samsung has launched a new site to let Galaxy Note 7 owners know if their device is safe or not. It comes around two weeks after Samsung started recalling Galaxy Note 7 handsets worldwide due to exploding battery fears. More than 90 Galaxy Note 7 smartphones have overheated due to defective batteries in just the US alone, and some users have reported battery explosions that have been blamed for fires in a Jeep and garage. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission announced a formal recall of Samsung's Galaxy Note 7 on Thursday.

Samsung's new site lets you enter an IMEI number to see if a Galaxy Note 7 is affected. If you're not familiar with your IMEI then you can find this by entering *#06# into the phone app, or from the box a Note 7 was supplied with. Samsung is also introducing a green battery icon on safe Galaxy Note 7 devices. The battery icon will change from white to green on the status bar, the always-on display screen, and the power off prompt screen. Samsung is also marking new Galaxy Note 7 devices with a square symbol on the packaging of the box.

Galaxy Note 7 battery box icon

While Samsung's green battery icon could easily be bypassed by unscrupulous sellers using third-party Android themes, the company's new online tool is the best way to ensure you buy a Note 7 that won't randomly explode. If you're attempting to buy a used Galaxy Note 7 then it would be wise to check the IMEI before purchase.

Galaxy Note 7 battery green icon

Samsung's green battery icon will likely do little to deter the FAA and airlines from advising passengers not to bring Galaxy Note 7 devices on planes. Samsung may have fumbled this global recall on multiple occasions, but if your device is affected then you should return it to Samsung immediately. It's simply not worth risking personal injury or loss of property.