Earlier this month, Samsung announced that it recovered over 96% of Note 7 devices sold in the U.S. With the carriers issuing updates to effectively brick the phone, most customers that have bought the device have returned it to Samsung. However, Verizon has revealed to Fortune that "thousands" of its customers are still using the device, posing a legitimate safety risk:
In spite of our best efforts, there are still customers using the recalled phones who have not returned or exchanged their Note 7 to the point of purchase. The recalled Note 7s pose a safety risk to our customers and those around them.
Verizon rolled out an update that prevents the Note 7 from charging on January 5, but it looks like a few users managed to avoid installing the update. The carrier is now undertaking additional measures to recover the device. Starting today, Verizon will redirect all calls — excluding those for 911 emergency services — placed from the Note 7 to its customer service department.
Verizon may also charge Note 7 holdouts for the full retail price of the phone, even if they were reimbursed previously. With the Note 7 costing upwards of $850 at launch, Verizon is hoping that the financial penalty will convince the remaining Note 7 customers to turn in their devices.
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