Chinese state broadcaster CCTV has accused Samsung of discriminating against local consumers over the global Galaxy Note 7 recall.
The South Korean smartphone maker had to recall its newest phablet as many owners complained that their Galaxy Note 7 caught fire or exploded while charging. About 2.5 million potentially faulty units were recalled all over the world, but Samsung was swift to get defective units replaced with new ones.
In mid-September, Tim Baxter, the President and COO of Samsung Electronics America, also issued a video message to American consumers addressing the issues surrounding the Galaxy Note 7 battery. During the video, Baxter also apologized for the entire Galaxy Note 7 fiasco.
Although Samsung has apologized for the problems customers faced with the faulty Galaxy Note 7, CCTV suggested that Samsung's behavior during the recall was "full of arrogance."
CCTV added that Samsung may have properly handled the Galaxy Note 7 recall in other parts of the world, especially the U.S., but the company handled the phablet recall very poorly in China. While Samsung issued a formal apology to the U.S., the company issued a statement in China saying most of the units didn't need replacement.
The broadcaster also slammed Samsung saying that the Galaxy Note 7 maker offered various return, exchange and refund options to customers in the U.S. but didn't offer similar benefits to consumers in China. It added that such behavior from Samsung is deemed discriminatory and has caused discontent from Chinese consumers.
Samsung has recalled less than 2,000 units in China. The company claims that most of the Galaxy Note 7 units in China were not affected by the global recall, as the battery provided in these phablets were procured from a different supplier. However, it's worth noting that several cases of Galaxy Note 7 phones catching fire have been reported in China as well.
The Galaxy Note 7 recall has cost Samsung more than $1 billion. Moreover, it has affected Samsung's reputation in the entire world. The Korean company is trying hard to bolster its position in the global smartphone market but it seems that it will only be distracted by the CCTV report on the company's discriminating policy over Galaxy Note 7 recall in China.
According to the International Data Corporation, Samsung is the leading mobile phone vendor in the entire world. However, the company is facing stiff competition in China by local rivals such as Huawei, Oppo, Vivo and more.
The remarks made by CCTV may affect Samsung's sales as well as reputation in China. Samsung has not yet released a statement to address CCTV's remark over the smartphone recall.