Samsung Electronics Co Ltd's shares fall to their lowest level in nearly two months after the tech giant told customers to switch off and return their new Galaxy Note 7 smartphones due to fire-prone batteries. Ryan Brooks reports.
Another hefty blow for Samsung on Monday. The company's South Korean shares sliding 7 percent after it urged customers to shut off and return Galaxy Note 7 smartphones as soon as possible. The device is now best known for its exploding batteries, which have wiped 20 billion dollars off Samsung's market value in less than two weeks. But as Reuters Robyn Mak reports, that may just be the tip of the iceberg. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS CORRESPONDENT, ROBYN MAK, SAYING: "Investors seem to be bracing for more lasting damage for the company's brand and reputation. If investors lose confidence in Samsung, it might affect sales of their other smartphones. So the Note 7 isn't their most popular phone. But as investors start questioning their flagship Galaxy S series, that would spell huge trouble for the rest of their mobile business." 2-and-a-half million Note 7s are expected to be recalled, leaving droves of unhappy users looking for a replacement. But that doesn't mean this is an automatic win for Samsung's number one arch-rival. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS CORRESPONDENT, ROBYN MAK, SAYING: "There are quite a lot of Android devices out there, such as Huawei and Oppo so many people who are looking to switch may actually go to the other Android makers rather than Apple." Airlines around the world have already slapped Note 7s with an in-flight ban adding to the embarrassment of the battery fiasco that's come right as the company was trumpeting its return to mobile success. Now that bright future that the company painted could be in jeopardy as limiting the damage to its reputation becomes priority number one.