South Korean authorities will use the ordeal surrounding the Galaxy Note 7 to establish a regulatory framework for faulty phones that all manufacturers in the country will be required to adhere to. A source close to Seoul told The Investor that the government will soon implement regulations according to which original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) will be mandated to report cases of their devices catching fire, melting, and exploding as soon as they learn about them, in addition to taking additional measures to handle such unfortunate scenarios. The new safety measures are expected to be officially announced by the South Korean government next week.
Apart from being completely transparent about any potentially hazardous failures of their devices, the new regulations will reportedly require that consumer electronics manufacturers start investigating any incidents as soon as they report them to authorities, the source said. Immediate investigations will be mandated so that OEMs quickly identify causes of any potential incidents and take additional measures like recalls if necessary. Furthermore, the source from the South Korean Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy told The Investor that the new regulatory framework will be announced by Seoul on Monday, February 6. The new set of rules was designed as a direct response to the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco as Samsung only notified the Korean government about potential issues with its 2016 phablet ten days after recording the first incident. While Samsung was initially criticized for the way it handled the ordeal last fall, the company didn't do anything illegal seeing how no regulations mandated the company to notify Seoul about the incident any sooner. The South Korean government wants to prevent similar cases in the future, and the incoming set of regulations was designed precisely for that purpose, the source said.
While Seoul is expected to announce new rules on Monday, they won't be put into force immediately. Instead, the new set of regulations is expected to come into force at some point in the next 12 months. Apart from new rules regulating OEMs, the South Korean authorities will also reveal the results of their own investigation into the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco on Monday, but their findings aren't expected to differ from those Samsung shared in January.