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Samsung halts production of troubled Galaxy Note 7 - Aljazeera

South Korean firm urges users to turn phone off immediately as analysts say recall could cost company $17 billion.

Samsung has announced a total halt to production and a recall of its troubled Galaxy Note 7 smartphone, citing continued safety concerns over the device bursting into flames.

Analysts have said that the move could cost the world's top smartphone maker $17bn, a huge blow as it fights Apple for domination of the market.

"We recently readjusted the production volume for thorough investigation and quality control, but putting consumer safety as top priority, we have reached a final decision to halt production of Galaxy Note 7s," the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

Earlier, the tech giant had urged owners to switch the phone off over safety concerns.

Samsung said that it had asked all global carriers to stop sales of Note 7s and stop exchanging original devices for replacements, while it worked with regulators to look into the problem.

"Consumers with either an original Galaxy Note 7 or replacement Galaxy Note 7 device should power down and stop using the device," the South Korean firm said in statement.

Samsung's decision to pull Note 7s off the shelves for the second time in less than two months has raised doubts about the firm's quality control, while industry commentators have questioned transparency at the tech giant.

"It is extremely difficult organisation to get an interview and to get information from. That's the way it operates," Al Jazeera's Harry Fawcett said, reporting from Seoul, said. 

Claire Reilly, senior writer at CNET Australia, told Al Jazeera "there were criticisms that Samsung did not move swiftly enough" after fires were first reported.

"I think the initial delay was because a recall is very scary for the company as they think about brand damage, bottom-line and share price," she said. "They moved a lot more swiftly which is what they had to do in the second case."


READ MORE: No smooth sailing for Samsung smartphones


Top US and Australian carriers on Monday suspended sales or exchanges of the Note 7s, while aviation authorities banned passengers from using the phones, after smoke from a replacement device forced the evacuation of a passenger plane in the United States last week.

"Its share prices at the close of trading here in Seoul were down by 8 percent which is nearly $17bn in terms of valuation of this hugely influential powerful and wealthy company in South Korea," Al Jazeera's Fawcett said.

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