Samsung is nearly ready to begin shipping a new batch of Galaxy Note 7 devices that don't suffer from the "isolated battery cell issues" that led to a worldwide recall just one week ago. When the replacements are received by customers and retailers over the next couple weeks, the Note 7 box will be clearly marked to indicate that the battery inside is safe. You'll see a small black box on the white barcode label, but the more obvious identifier will be a circular sticker with a blue S in the middle. It'll look something like this:
That'll make it easier to distinguish which Note 7s don't pose a risk when you're looking at the packaging, but what if you've only got the phone itself? Samsung isn't making any changes to the Note 7's physical design. Instead, it'll be launching an IMEI database tool next week where consumers can type in their phone's unique IMEI number and see whether it's an original, recalled note or one of the safe replacement shipments. The IMEI can be found on the Note 7's barcode label, but you can also view it on the device itself by going to the settings menu.
Buyers of the original Note 7 should be able to exchange the device for a replacement model wherever it was originally purchased. Following the recall, mobile carriers have also offered full refunds on the Note 7 and waived all restocking fees. In most cases, customers also have the option of trading it for a Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge and being credited the difference in cost.