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Cellphones It's funny.  Laugh. United Kingdom Hardware

Samsung Blames Galaxy SIII Burn On "External Energy Source" 169

Posted by timothy
from the but-I-used-the-defrost-setting dept.
MojoKid writes "Samsung has some great news for Galaxy SIII smartphone owners. As it turns out, your mobile device isn't at risk of overheating to the point where it catches on fire and burns through its casing, as a forum member at Boards.ie claimed was the case with his Galaxy SIII a couple of weeks ago. [Note: And has since retracted.] Fire Investigations UK (FIUK), an independent third-party organization, assisted Samsung with looking into the matter, and here's what they concluded: 'The energy source responsible for generating the heat has been determined as external to the device... the device was not responsible for the cause of the fire,' FIUK said in a statement. 'The only way it was possible to produce damage similar to the damage recorded within the owner's damaged device was to place the devices or component parts within a domestic microwave.'"
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Samsung Blames Galaxy SIII Burn On "External Energy Source"

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  • by bemymonkey (1244086) on Monday July 09, 2012 @03:57AM (#40589271)

    ... the user who initially complained admitted that a buddy of his had tried to repair the phone after it had come in contact with an unknown amount of water... and of course, he promptly retracted his complaint.

    What a jackass.

    For everyone else: DON'T PUT YOUR FUCKING PHONE IN THE MICROWAVE.

  • by Apothem (1921856) on Monday July 09, 2012 @03:57AM (#40589273)
    Will it blend?
  • by LordLucless (582312) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:01AM (#40589285)

    So it's not Samsung doing the blaming, it's an independent, third party investigating party. And the scare quotes around the mysterious "External Energy Source" actually refer to a microwave, which the owner's friend apparently used to dry out his phone.

    So, why wasn't the title "Microwave discovered to be cause of Galaxy SIII Burn"? Why are we trying to spin the headline to make it look like Samsung's making excuses for itself?

    • by jpate (1356395) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:03AM (#40589295) Homepage

      So, why wasn't the title "Microwave discovered to be cause of Galaxy SIII Burn"? Why are we trying to spin the headline to make it look like Samsung's making excuses for itself?

      mmmm, a conspiracy theory about this community's propensity for conspiracy theories... nice!

      • by devitto (230479)

        ...and that title won't make people think the S3 is GENERATING microwaves ?

        Context, context, context.....

    • by should_be_linear (779431) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:15AM (#40589339)
      In other news, expensive Cuban cigars fall apart, as soon as you try to clean it with kitchen blender.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      why wasn't the title "Microwave discovered to be cause of Galaxy SIII Burn"? Why are we trying to spin the headline to make it look like Samsung's making excuses for itself?

      Probably due to laziness. The title in TFA is the same, so probably just cut & paste.

    • I read the post in the forum.
      Here is what it says
      I would like to retract my original statement. The damage to the phone was caused by another person, although they were attempting to recover the phone from water this later caused the damage shown on the phone. It occurred due to a large amount of external energy and there was no fault with the phone. This was not a deliberate act but a stupid mistake.

      I am unable to comment any further.

      So they put the phone in a microwave to dry it after it was submerged in

      • I never think i would be surprised by stupidity....

        Well the site does have a ".ie" suffix...

        • by Chrisq (894406)

          I never think i would be surprised by stupidity....

          Well the site does have a ".ie" suffix...

          You think they would label them "do not Microwave" for the Irish market

        • Boards.ie is full of idiots but I don't think it reflects on Ireland or the ".ie" suffix. In fact, the ".ie" is one of the most tightly controlled commercial suffixes available on the internet. You need to demostrate why you are entitled to the address. Pain in the arse for me because I wanted to setup a site that wasn't a business but for me and my friends as a bit of a joke site but they refused my application
      • by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Monday July 09, 2012 @05:03AM (#40589527) Journal

        A new MMO has launched, The Secret World. In the game you have an inventory WINDOW. In help one player asked how you could resize it... hint, it is a window. SAME WAY YOU DO IT IN EVERY OS!

        You have to wonder how that person even manages to turn on a computer.

        But people like this are not "stupid" in that they don't know things, they just lack or are to lazy to put two and two together. "If I have seen furthest, it is because I stood on the shoulders of giants".

        These people stand on the ground. They can't link experiences from the past into the present. That user I mentioned might well have resized windows on windows but he couldn't make the connection that the inventory window looks and behaves as a window too. Lazyness comes into it since a non-lazy person would have tried something. For instance, dealing with chat windows. Right-click to change settings. How lazy do you got to be to not be able to even TRY that before asking?

        A quest button is on the right, if clicked you can select a different quest to track. Yet people ask how to do that because it doesn't occur to them to simply try some stuff.

        Manuals, message of the day are useless for these people.

        The person from the article probably did see some video of metal in a microwave. Probably knows it is not an oven. Knows that plastic melts and just didn't put it together. For every person who pulls a radio apart to see how it looks inside, there is another person who never "learns" the power icon because it never occurs to them that there might be a reason for that image on the button.

        When you do design, you sadly got to take these people into account.

        Another example? Well, if one user was on slashdot, they would ask how you can preview a post. Clothes in the cash shop have preview button right there in your face and she couldn't see it and bitched they should have included a preview option. A button labelled preview and you miss it. Those people would microwave a phone to dry it.

        • A new MMO has launched, The Secret World. In the game you have an inventory WINDOW. In help one player asked how you could resize it... hint, it is a window. SAME WAY YOU DO IT IN EVERY OS!

          Well, for one thing, that varies:

          Windows - Drag any edge
          OS X - Drag any edge but the top
          OS X (pre Lion) - Drag the lower right corner
          Linux - Drag any edge or corner or use hotkey & mouse (Gnome - edges and corners have a small target width)

          Next, if a user is extrapolating that something that could be done in various OSs might work in your game, and which is supposed to work in the game, but is unable to do so, perhaps the functionality is broken for that user and they want to confirm that it's not, in

          • by Dreadrik (1651967)

            You can resize by dragging the top edge in OS X Snow Lion. I'm not sure if it's new for this version though.

          • But no, he wasn't asking for a confirmation of a bug, he thanked me for making his inventory larger. He asked nicely so I answered but still thought, "silly".

            And yes, it slightly varies but lets face it, the chances this user was running under Wine/Linux or or OSX are roughly zero.

        • it wouldn't surprise me if they didn't know how to resize a window, a lot of users i see never run anything in windowed mode, they maximize everything. so it isn't like they are resizing things every day.

        • by Inda (580031)
          My old mate, back in 1995, used to warm the microwave oven up for five minutes before he 'cooked' his daily pasty. Why wouldn't he? His mother always warmed the oven up before cooking the Sunday dinner.

          We never told him. We only laughed.
        • by vsync64 (155958)

          This is the fault of game " 'UI' 'designers' " who insist on drawing their own things instead of using system widgets. At best they act like the designer's preferred platform no matter where the application is running. More likely, they only approximate the coarsest features of the thing being emulated and leave the user with a constant feeling of frustration.

          Really? You have to develop your own scrollbar?

          (Scrollbars are actually a good example. I should note that this idiocy is now making its way

        • What truly makes me sad was not his inability to figure that electronics + microwave = bad, but thinking that a microwave DRIES water. Honestly, we are looking at an IQ ~85.
    • by antifoidulus (807088) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:51AM (#40589479) Homepage Journal
      What a moron, EVERYONE knows that the only real way to dry cell phones is to put them in the toaster.
      • by MickLinux (579158) on Monday July 09, 2012 @05:04AM (#40589529) Journal
        Could we just get this over with and put it on ASK SLASHDOT? I'm waiting...
        • by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) on Monday July 09, 2012 @06:58AM (#40589973)
          Put your phone in a zip-lock bag and pour a load of rice in with it. Seal the bag and leave it for a couple of days. Alternatively, if you're a nerd like me, slip in four or five silica gel pouches you've hidden away.
          • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

            by Anonymous Coward

            Should that be boiled rice or fried rice?

          • by idontgno (624372) on Monday July 09, 2012 @11:42AM (#40593179) Journal

            Put your phone in a zip-lock bag and pour a load of rice in with it.

            And, as always, wise and well-intentioned advice leaves out critical information.

            Uncooked rice. Not steamed rice, not boiled rice, not parboiled rice, not fried rice, not Spanish rice, not risotto ,not Rice-o-Roni (which isn't entirely rice anyway), not Jerry Rice or Donna Rice or Rice, Kansas.

            Seriously. Packing your slightly-moistened phone into a baggie of steaming hot cooked rice WILL NOT HELP.

            • by CityZen (464761)

              > Packing your slightly-moistened phone into a baggie of steaming hot cooked rice WILL NOT HELP.

              It might help it taste better.

          • by Mashiki (184564)

            Yeah this is a good trick, I'm actually surprised more people don't know it. Our historical society uses it here for pre-drying modern books as most of the more modern stuff does funky stuff to paper fibers.

          • by jo_ham (604554)

            Put your phone in a zip-lock bag and pour a load of rice in with it. Seal the bag and leave it for a couple of days. Alternatively, if you're a nerd like me, slip in four or five silica gel pouches you've hidden away.

            I'd probably use calcium carbonate and then put it in a large schlenk vessel and put it under high vac in the back of my fumehood for a couple of days, but the principle is the same.

            If your phone ever gets wet like that, find a friendly chemist :p

          • by Smauler (915644)

            Alternatively, if you're a nerd like me, slip in four or five silica gel pouches you've hidden away.

            I think most people just swallow those.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Headline written by Apple fanboy, I'm guessing.

  • by gnasher719 (869701) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:09AM (#40589315)
    I suggest that people should need a license to use advanced technology like mobile phones. And someone sticking their mobile phone into a microwave should lose that license for life.
    • by StripedCow (776465) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:57AM (#40589499)

      I suggest that people should need a license to use advanced technology like mobile phones.

      That may cost Apple its market share.

      • by Henriok (6762)
        Ah! You hint to a belief that those who buys iPhones are techically challenged, and if they were to be banned from buying Apple products Apple would suffer. No, that's probably not accurate. Thanks for playing.
        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by Anonymous Coward

          BURN! StripedCow never saw that coming!

      • That may cost Apple its market share.

        That would cost Apple some customers (customers that you really don't want as your customers, actually), but I doubt it would cost them market share.

    • by roman_mir (125474)

      And I suggest an EASY REPAIR to this problem.

      The owner of this phone should immediately try it, it will help, here is the recipe: stick your fucking head in the microwave, turn it on, and then file a support complaint with your mother for giving birth to a defective unit.

      • by gedeco (696368)

        Unfortunately, You can't operate a Microwave without closing the door.
        I believe the idiot is to big for closing the lid.

        • by roman_mir (125474)

          sure you can, use a knife or a screw driver to push the safety button in, or break the glass with the head and don't even open the door, should work.

    • And they also shouldn't be allowed to breed.

    • Radio amateurs have a license for using their advanced technology radio equipment, but this does not protect them from misbehaving [tbo.com].
  • by Teknikal69 (1769274) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:14AM (#40589335)
    Heat was very obviously external as the outside was melted and the inside was only slightly marked, the story would probably have been called out as dubious right away if the army of Apple fanboys hadn't seized on it started posting it everywhere and ignoring all the evidence.

    Even I'm surprised someone was stupid enough to put their phone in a microwave mind you.

    • by gabriel (2115)

      Well according to the report "the heat damage to the device appears to have been generated from within the device".

      So no, the heat was internal although in this case possibly induced by the microwave oven.

    • Heat was very obviously external as the outside was melted and the inside was only slightly marked [...]

      It might still be the case (pun unintended) that a microwave was used as the heat source. However, I've always been told that microwave ovens burn things from the inside (where there are more trapped water molecules to excite) out (presumably drier since the skin can be wiped prior to microwaving).

      My own experience when using a microwave to toast bread is that the center gets burnt. Which isn't exactly t

      • by mutube (981006)

        Microwaves cook 'inside out' at the cellular level. That is they heat the water which in turn cooks the yummy protein and carbohydrate.

        Cook a chicken fillet and the outside is most definitely cooked before the inside presumably because the microwaves have to get through the water nearer the surface to reach the middle. As the outside of the meat dries they can penetrate further - in much the same way as heat in an conventional oven.

      • by Rogue974 (657982) on Monday July 09, 2012 @08:32AM (#40590747)

        Microwaves create a standing wave from the point of source. The waves are at the right frequency to excite the water molecules.

        They don't really cook from the inside out, they cook from the point where the waves hit the water molecules at the wave high and low points. There is a yummy experiement you can perform to demonstrate the speed of light by looking at the waves created in a microwave and see how microwaves actually work.

        First: Remove the rotating glass dish at the bottom of the microwave. You need what you are putting in the microwave to remain stationary.
        Second: Get twix, kit kat, or some other long thin candy bar, preferably cholcolate as it has water in it and place them on a plate in the microwave going from left to right. The Microwave source is behind the keypad and time and it shoots across the microwave to the other side.
        Third: Turn on the microwave and watch.

        You will see that spots will start to melt on the candy at which point you can turn off the microwave. The spots on the candy are the high and low points of the standing wave and are the points that were heated. It doens't matter inside the food or outside the food, it matters where the wave hits the food. Most people say it cooks from the inside out, but if you think about your food, the outside is a very small layer of the food while the inside is the bulk of the food. The chances of the wave focusing on the outside are insanely small compared to the chances of the heat points being on the inside.

        If you want to verify the speed of light, it has to do with knowing the speed of light and equtions that deal with the frequency and amplitude of waves, you can measure the distance between the melted points on the candy bar, look up the frequency of the wave the microwave generates and verify the equations.

        Oh, and don't forget to eat the candy.

        http://morningcoffeephysics.com/measuring-the-speed-of-light-with-chocolate-and-a-microwave-oven/ [morningcoffeephysics.com]

        A link to a more detailed explanation of the experiment and equations. So it isn't that a microwave cooks from the inside out, it cooks at the peaks and troughs of the standing wave, which have a much greater chance of cocentrating the heat on the inside.

    • by azalin (67640)

      Even I'm surprised someone was stupid enough to put their phone in a microwave mind you.

      Actually that sounds like a fun project. Done outside, from a distance, with an old phone, a to-be-thrown-away microwave, a rather long extension cord and a timer. Oh and a video camera with a good zoom on a tripod.

      • Go and watch Brainiac, they did this repeatedly with spectacular results.

        • by azalin (67640)
          I do know that I could simply open youtube and have a wide selection, but nothing beats blowing things up err "experimenting" yourself. Just know your limits and keep your distance. My old chemistry teacher used to say that the main reason so many chemists wear beards is to hide the scars.
      • by Smauler (915644)

        Fluorescent bulbs are very cool for this.

    • by Kjella (173770)

      Even I'm surprised someone was stupid enough to put their phone in a microwave mind you.

      A woman I know of managed to lose her cell phone in the toilet, which is clumsy. But she felt it was so yucky to reach in and grab it, she decided to flush it first... Granted, alcohol was involved but you're still pretty retarded when you do that. And while I haven't put a cell phone in the microwave, years ago we had these plates with engraving that I didn't think about was metal. It was quite the lightning show. Most of that shit happen simply because you aren't even thinking about it.

    • by jo_ham (604554)

      Yeah, in much the same way the dodgy Sony battery story was all Apple's fault, with tales of Macbook Pros as "potential time bombs" were so well handled in an objective and calm manner. Or the story about the "flaming" iPod, caused by a DIY repair puncturing the battery.

      I think it was obvious from the start that the damage involved here was caused by something other than the phone.

  • FFS what is this doing on the front page?

    Not only is it OLD NEWS but the mouth-breather in question already admitted he microwaved the bloody thing after he got it wet...

  • by iB1 (837987) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:33AM (#40589413)
    Seriously this is disappointing. I'm getting better quality news and stories from "tabloid" websites such as The Register and The Inquirer now. Slashdot is starting to resemble a blog full of random ramblings than a good quality, reliable news source.
  • ...and (Score:5, Funny)

    by Konster (252488) on Monday July 09, 2012 @04:40AM (#40589443)

    Some men just like to watch the galaxy burn.

  • to know why on earth you would

    place the devices or component parts within a domestic microwave.

    Unless you live by eating well-done devices!

  • by awjr (1248008) on Monday July 09, 2012 @05:41AM (#40589667)

    You really really need to investigate further before posting these stories. Samsung didn't "blame" it on external sources which implies "it wasn't really us, honest, seriously". The guy that posted the initial fire report had a friend 'drop' the phone into water then attempt to dry it out using a microwave.

    "Galaxy SIII burn caused by microwaving wet phone" is what it should be.

  • I used to think the reports of timothy's failures at reporting were overblown. Now I know better. Talk about an epic failure. Why does this guy still have a job?

    • Normally I'd hit this up with a "troll" moderation ...

      But you may actually have a point there somewhere ... a quick re-write of some of these summary wouldn't go astray - or perhaps just skipping some of the stories all together.

    • by tqk (413719)

      I used to think the reports of timothy's failures at reporting were overblown. Now I know better. Talk about an epic failure. Why does this guy still have a job?

      I don't know why you're singling out "timothy" here. Almost every story's summary, regardless of "editor", obviously suffers from a lack of proofreading at the very least, not to mention other obvious faults (misleading or inaccurate titles, spelling mistakes, fanboi-ism, ...).

      We have no idea what is in the job description or list of duties or SOP for the position of /. "editor." They may actually be doing it just as their overlords specify it to be done. This is a web forum, driven by page views and adv

  • Considering TFA and the use of the word "blames" and the quotes around "external energy source" I would say Slashdot is very close if not smack on the dot of committing libel.

    A wet phone was put in a microwave oven. Slashdot's story title suggests the manufacturer is an outright liar.

  • Look how strange the phrasing is. One ultra vague statement and one hyperspecific statement. Is this a legal thing like the first statement is for the law courts complete with perjury danger while the second statement is PR spin, or is it just weird?

    'The energy source responsible for generating the heat has been determined as external to the device... the device was not responsible for the cause of the fire,' FIUK said in a statement.

    OK kinda vague but it sounds like it was plugged into the charger when it went boom.

    'The only way it was possible to produce damage similar to the damage recorded within the owner's damaged device was to place the devices or component parts within a domestic microwave.'"

    OK super specific. I suppose its easy enough to prove, look at non-energetic materials areas, if stuff on the exterior like buttons/case/etc shows more heat damage than the in

    • by nedlohs (1335013)

      Seems completely normal to me.

      State the overall conclusion - which category it fits into, in this case external causes. If you came up with additional conclusions state them as well.

  • by Greyfox (87712) on Monday July 09, 2012 @06:39AM (#40589897) Homepage Journal
    1) Will it blend? Yes
    2) Will it Microwave? No
    Got it!
  • In a billion years this galaxy will have an external energy source that will screw things up - Andromeda

It appears that PL/I (and its dialects) is, or will be, the most widely used higher level language for systems programming. -- J. Sammet

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