Samsung SII dramatically overheating

I am a big fan of Samsung: in fact, I think I own more Samsung devices than Apple and those who know me know how much of an Apple fanboi I can be.

Anyway, when I gave up on Nokia, I went straight to a Samsung SII and never looked back. Like many, I whined about short battery life, but with huge screens, lots of apps and wireless blasting on, this is common gripe that no vendor has yet resolved. In my case, I replaced the standard fare 6.11 Wh battery with a more capacious 7.4 Wh and I managed to get a full day of normal work on a charge. At night, I stick my phone on its cradle and in the morning I am good to go. When on the road, I pack a couple of spare batteries, all original Samsung, of course.

My gear
My gear

A couple of days ago I had one of those confcall-intensive days which depleted my battery halfway through the morning; to avoid being beached later in the day, I put my phone on its charger and went on with my work.

molten cable
A “hot” product
20131212_122338
Burn, baby, burn!
molten cable 2
Ominous message
20131212_130938
“X” marks the spot

After a while I noticed a foul smell which I could not pinpoint, until I got a new call: I picked my phone and dropped it immediately as it was burning hot.

As you can see from the pics, the plastic casing around the micro USB connector was already melting, and so was the cable itself. You can also see on my wooden desk the burning mark left by the overheating connector.

Amazingly, the phone was still working (shortly) and in the last minutes of its functioning life I captured this screen shot of the battery diagnostic which immediately suggested I was in trouble.

After a few minutes, the phone was definitely bricked, would not charge or turn on; my only remaining course of action was to simply go out and purchase a brand-new Samsung SIII: all of my data are throughly backed up, so I lost nothing.

It is clear, however, that the damage could have been much bigger: had I left the phone on the desk while at lunch for example, I cannot rule out it would eventually had set fire on it – not a pleasant situation at all.

To be honest, I didn’t think much of this until I saw this post today. I am not in a similar situation AT ALL, as Samsung did not send any nasty letters, but I sympathyze with GhostlyRich and I also think that while my phone is not under warranty anymore, I would not expect it to catch fire for this. Talk about “best before…” !

The purpose of my post it (as usual) to simply alert others which may have a similar situation: leaving your phone on charger unattended seems a pretty innocuous behaviour which we all do all the time, and I hope Samsung has some suggestions as to ways to prevent setting our houses ablaze either before or after the warranty period.

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