Regulator warns retailers

By Lanuola Tupufia – Ah Tong 21 September 2016, 12:00AM

The Office of the Regulator has cautioned retailers from selling Samsung Galaxy Note 7s in the country. 

An order from the Regulator to halt all type of Samsung Galaxy Note7 devices last week was in response to an international report of the device exploding from faulty battery packs. 

Regulator, Unutoa Auelua – Fonoti said it was better to inform the public for their safety to avoid any incidents. 

However, Unutoa emphasised that the Regulator’s power is limited to Samsung Galaxy Note7 being sold in the country. 

“We have no jurisdiction over those (people) that bought phones overseas and bringing it in Samoa,” she told the Samoa Observer. 

“The order targets retailers but for individuals buying it from overseas that is on them…We haven’t had any reported cases of incidents occurring from this particular device in the country.”

Asked what will happen to the recalled devices, Unutoa said it was up to the retailers on what their next action will be on it. 

Contacted for a comment yesterday, Chief Executive Officer of Digicel Samoa, Rory Condon noted the Office of the Regulator’s ban on sale for the decide and the product recall initiated by Samsung. 

“We can confirm that Digicel Samoa has not sold any Samsung Galaxy Note 7s to any customers in Samoa and currently holds no stock of the handset in question,” Mr. Condon said in an email. 

“For the avoidance of doubt, Digicel has focused on retailing the higly popular Samsung S7 and S7 Edge range in recent months. Customers have not reported issues with this range and they have not been subject to any recall.”

Furthermore, the C.E.O. explained the company also retails the highly popular LTE compatible Samsung J2 and J5 smartphones, which have not been subject to any reported issues. 

“We do recognize that some customers on the Digicel network may have procured the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 overseas or from other retailers,” he said.  

“In that instance, Digicel advises the customer to switch the phone off, refrain from charging it, and return it to the retailer from where it was purchased for a refund.”

The ban from Regulator’s Office last week follows a number of countries including the United States that have stopped the sale of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7s. 

The Regulator’s decision to halt the type approval for Samsung Galaxy note 7 devices mean that any retailer proposing to sell these devices in the country will not be issued type approval to sell these devices. 

The decision was in pursuant to the Regulators powers under Section 60 of the Telecommunications Act 2005 and the Regulator’s order No 2011/02 that gives the Regulator the power to type approve any telecommunications equipment that will be directly or indirectly connected to a telecommunication service. 

By Lanuola Tupufia – Ah Tong 21 September 2016, 12:00AM

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