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I returned my Galaxy Note 7 and you should, too

by Todd Haselton | September 8, 2016September 8, 2016 12:06 pm EST

I just got back from the AT&T store where I dropped off two Galaxy Note 7 units, submitting myself to Samsung’s recall. You might say I’m getting caught up in some of the scary news surrounding the device. Australian airlines won’t let Galaxy Note 7 owners charge phones during their flights. A dude in Florida just fried his Jeep Cherokee because he left a Galaxy Note 7 charging inside. I decided last night I’m not willing to take the same risks, no matter how minimal, so I set an appointment to take it to AT&T today.

AT&T made it almost-seamless to return my device.

There’s a bit of a long story that I’ll try to make short: I cracked my first Galaxy Note 7 so I bought another one quickly before traveling last week. When I took both to the store, one employee tried to tell me (multiple times, almost to the point of a full-blown argument) that he wouldn’t take the broken Galaxy Note 7 back. Normally I’d never ask someone to take back a broken phone, but a policy is a policy.

AT&T’s site actually says it will accept any condition Galaxy Note 7. After a few seconds of arguing a manager stepped in and said it must be a new policy. Stick to your guns if you wind up in a similar situation: AT&T will take back your phone even if it has a cracked display or doesn’t turn on.

AT&T provides several options (as do all major U.S. carriers.) for its customers. In my case with AT&T, I had the choice to return the device and wait for the Galaxy Note 7 to return to stock, swap it for another Samsung product to avoid paying a restocking fee, or swap it out for another device entirely. AT&T also gives you a $25 credit if you choose a Samsung device, and any returns obviously reset your upgrades. Since the iPhone 7 pre-orders begin in a few hours, I’ll probably upgrade one line to that and another to the Galaxy Note 7 when it comes back in stock.

For whatever reason, one of the in-store employees at AT&T who was helping me told me he was sticking to his. He said it’s too much of a pain to swap out everything. But is that really worth the risk? Samsung is taking a huge financial hit and recalling its phones for a reason – and not one that I’d mess with. I’d rather move my files than have a phone burn my car to the ground.

In any case, it’s a rather painless experience. Return your Galaxy Note 7 and get a different phone, or wait until the replacement units come in.

Todd Haselton

Todd Haselton has been writing professionally since 2006 during his undergraduate days at Lehigh University. He started out as an intern with...