Technology

Samsung's Defective Product

What are the things Americans see recalled the most? Cars. Baby strollers. Exercise equipment. Samsung has extended that list to washing machines. It built 663,500 that have a fire risk.

Those being recalled are part of Samsung’s Samsung Top-Load Washing Machines. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The danger is that these can “short-circuit and overheat, posing a fire hazard.” These were bought at Best Buy, Costco, The Home Depot, and Lowe’s and additional appliance stores nationwide. Some were bought online at Samsung.com between June 2021 to December 2022 at price points between $900 and $1,500. Problems have been reported with 51 machines.

The Samsung issue, which can be fixed via a software download, shows how a relatively few defective product reports can undermine a company’s brand value. The CNN story about the machines carried the headline, “Samsung recalls more than 660,000 washing machines after fire hazard reports .” Similar headlines ran at CBS and ABC, most of their local TV states, and were posted on Twitter. Certainly, tens of thousands of people saw these.

Samsung already knows if the recall has hurt the sales of these washing machines. So do managers at Best Buy, Costco, and Lowe’s. Retailers may have pushed the machines to the back of their appliance sections or stopped selling them entirely.

Samsung management is left to wonder how the washing machines got onto the market at all. Modern manufacturing is supposed to be sophisticated to detect these products before products like they are shipped.

Samsung’s sales of washing machines will be stung, and the repairs will cost it something, although this is almost certainly very little. How its affects the public’s new of its washing machines is another matter.

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