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# 138500 7-Jan-2014 12:42
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If you have a Galaxy S4, please check to make sure your battery isn't about to explode.

http://crave.cnet.co.uk/mobiles/samsung-says-galaxy-s4-battery-woes-limited-offers-free-batteries-50012509/

This is a known issue and Samsung in NZ have been very cagey about how widespread the issue is but have announced (overseas) they will replace batteries at service centres if they exhibit this issue. I was quoted a serial number range of BD1D401xx - BD1D529xx as an affected range by Samsung NZ support, however that was only after being quite insistent.

The person I spoke to at Samsung NZ was very reticent about acknowledging that it was a known issue. This battery is only about 5 months old.





I'll update with how co-operative Samsung NZ are now that I have sent them all the info they asked for. Their opening gambit was "Take the phone to the retialer or a Telecom store and they'll send it away for inspection". I was pretty insistent that while that approach may satisfy the requirements of the CGA and warranty, that would be enough to ensure I never bought another Samsung Anything - especially given this is a known issue (and my battery SN was in the affected range I was quoted)

Cheers _ N





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  # 962419 7-Jan-2014 13:24
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I had this issue with my S4, I just sent in the battery with phone receipt and they replaced the battery, no issues.

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  # 962430 7-Jan-2014 13:54
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My S4 is a 3-5 month old Telecom, serial number range of my battery is completely different. No bulging.

 
 
 
 


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  # 962443 7-Jan-2014 14:02
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My phone in the range and does seem to be showing budging.  I have noticed it has strange battery drain episodes, where it gets super hot and the battery drains rapidly.

However when I went to get my phone fixed (for another issue), 2degrees told me I would  have to put down a $50 dollar deposit and I would be out a phone for about a week.

Is there any other options as I don't really want to be phone less for a week?





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  # 962580 7-Jan-2014 16:55
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Well... Samsung really dropped the customer service ball on this one...

After initially being told by Harvey Norman the only thing they could do was take the battery (AND PHONE!) back and send it away for 'repair', they suggested I ring Samsung which I did.

Samsung initially said they would need the phone and battery sent to them which I suggested was an inflexible and unreasonable policy given the known issue and the fact my battery was in the affected SN range. After Two more calls and escalations, they agreed with me and told me to go to a Telecom Retail store and get the battery swapped. I was assured that the stores hold stocks of the battery.

After getting the store answerphone 5 times I decided to go in and do the swap. Well... The assistant manager at the Palms Telecom Retail Store just about laughed (before quickly regaining his composure) when I said I had been sent by Samsung to swap a SGS4 battery. He said that his one store alone had a waiting list of over 20 people waiting for faulty battery replacements, and he hadn't seen a spare battery for the SGS4 for ages. He suggested strongly that it was likely the other Chch TRS stores had similar waiting lists.

Oh well, nothing he can do about it - not his problem really.

Phoned Samsung to complain about being sent in for a spare when the stores can't get any and after 10 minutes on hold was forwarded to TELECOM! Apologised for disturbing them and...

Phoned Samsung back and asked if it was safe to continue using the phone/battery and got totally sidestepped on that one (Went on hold to ask someone and when he came back, didn't answer that question)

After specifically suggesting they put their policy aside and courier me a spare battery after getting me to waste a trip into town they came up with an ugly solution that still involves me making a another trip into town, but at least might see the battery replaced this week.

As for the hordes of other customers waiting for SGS4 battery replacements for a known fault, I suggest you contact Samsung and ask them if it's safe to continue using the phones, and when they intend to make spare batteries available to the stores...

I'm really going to have a good look at other brands next time I upgrade my phone - I like the device, but this service is laughable.

Cheers - N




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Please note all comments are the product of my own brain and don't necessarily represent the position or opinions of my employer, previous employers, colleagues, friends or pets.


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  # 962585 7-Jan-2014 17:24
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Wow. That's horrible. Mind you, Samsungs "service" surrounding the S3 failure was the reason I don't have my S4 anymore.

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  # 962593 7-Jan-2014 17:34
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They should just be couriering people new batteries. It is not as though people haven't spent a lot of money on these phones.
I had this same exact problem with a nokia phone. The battery still worked but it had bulged and deformed the back case.. I asked them whether it was safe to continue using the phone and recharging the battery, and they advised against it. So they sent me a new battery by courier within a week. No downtime, and no inconvenience for the customer. The trick is to escalate it to management.



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  # 962594 7-Jan-2014 17:37
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mattwnz: They should just be couriering people new batteries. It is not as though people haven't spent a lot of money on these phones.
I had this same exact problem with a nokia phone. The battery still worked but it had bulged and deformed the back case.. I asked them whether it was safe to continue using the phone and recharging the battery, and they advised against it. So they sent me a new battery by courier within a week. No downtime, and no inconvenience for the customer. The trick is to escalate it to management.


That's exactly what I suggested and was told (by a manager) that it's not their policy and they were making an exception just for me. I think that made me even more upset - knowing that only after 4-5 phone calls and being badly misdirected were they going to do the right thing ONLY FOR ME... Everyone else who couldn't be bothered being insistent can go through the waiting game.

I'm wondering if Samsung NZ don't have any spare batteries in stock?

Cheers - N





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Please note all comments are the product of my own brain and don't necessarily represent the position or opinions of my employer, previous employers, colleagues, friends or pets.


 
 
 
 


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  # 962687 7-Jan-2014 19:59
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Bought 3 S4's from Clove, had to send 2 of them back so far with this issue.
Cheers for the heads up on the battery serial numbers to look out for. Will see if the gf's battery falls in this range

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  # 962765 7-Jan-2014 21:24
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@Talkiet - That is really weird, I sent in just the (visibly swollen) battery and they replaced it no questions asked. Were you dealing with the Samsung customer service plaza or Telegistics? Both are "Samsung authorised warranty centres" but not actually owned or run by Samsung. Just wondering if it could just be a Telegistics thing..

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  # 962822 7-Jan-2014 22:27
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Thanks again for the S/N's. Just checked the Mrs S4. Both batteries ok. One begins with aa other is ys. She has the samsung external charger that came with the "ys" battery.

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  # 962958 8-Jan-2014 08:18

I've heard an anecdote (I think from the TradeMe forums) that someone with this issue was able to go directly to Samsung in Auckland & get a replacement battery on the spot. Hopefully with this clearly being a known fault (Colleague had the same issue, so did Murphy), the process is streamlined considerably. Good argument for user-replaceable batteries, I suppose.




Product Manager @ PB Tech

https://pbtech.co.nz/smartphones


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  # 962988 8-Jan-2014 08:57
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I don't get why Samsung are making customers jump through hoops with this, its a known issue and they will know about it, a quick Google search confirms. What do they think they have to gain by messing with customers?
Similar to the S3 sudden death.




Mike
Retired IT Manager. 
The views stated in my posts are my personal views and not that of any other organisation.

 

Using empathy takes no energy and can gain so much. Try it.

 

 


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  # 963278 8-Jan-2014 14:12
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Talkiet: After getting the store answerphone 5 times I decided to go in and do the swap.


I think Telecom stores have a general policy of not answering the phone. I went in and they were totally understaffed.



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  # 963408 8-Jan-2014 18:17
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I got through to a second Telecom store today (by phone) and they also confirmed they had no spare batteries and had a heap of people waiting for replacement batteries for the SGS4.

They also confirmed that they wouldn't swap one out if a customer came in, further making a mockery of the suggestion by Samsung NZ to go in and ask for a replacement.

Very unprofessional and seemingly a very widespread issue.

Cheers - N




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Please note all comments are the product of my own brain and don't necessarily represent the position or opinions of my employer, previous employers, colleagues, friends or pets.


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  # 963420 8-Jan-2014 18:23
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Talkiet: I got through to a second Telecom store today (by phone) and they also confirmed they had no spare batteries and had a heap of people waiting for replacement batteries for the SGS4.

They also confirmed that they wouldn't swap one out if a customer came in, further making a mockery of the suggestion by Samsung NZ to go in and ask for a replacement.

Very unprofessional and seemingly a very widespread issue.

Cheers - N


Perhaps people who are having the problem and are unable to use their phone, should be returning their phones for a refund of the purchase price. then see how quickly they manage to find some new replacement batteries. I guess the good thing for them is that the battery isn't built into the phone.

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