Samsung’s India arm on Friday said that the aviation regulator has issued an advisory to travellers and airline companies lifting the restrictions on in-flight use of the new Samsung Galaxy Note7, purchased after 15th September, 2016.
“Customers can identify the new Galaxy Note7 with the ‘green battery icon’. Devices displaying this visual icon are safe to charge and use during the flight,” Samsung quoted the DGCA as saying in a statement.
However, Samsung is yet to sale any Note 7 smartphone in India. “It is important to note that Samsung has not sold a single unit of Galaxy Note7 in India so far. The ‘green battery icon’ will apply to all Galaxy Note7 units that will be sold to customers in India when it is launched,” a Samsung spokesperson said adding that the company “recognizes the inconvenience the advisory has caused to customers, flyers and airline authorities, and remain committed towards customer safety.”
Earlier, on September 9, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had issued a public notice prohibiting the use of ‘Samsung Galaxy Note 7’ on the flights even on flight mode. It had further advised flyers not to stow away the phablet in checked-in baggages.
“In the light of recent incidents involving battery issue with Samsung about its Galaxy Note7 devices globally, travelling public and airlines are advised to ensure not to turn on or charge Galaxy Note7 mobile phone on board the aircraft,” Director General for Civil Aviation BS Bhullar had said in a public notice, issues earlier.
The DGCA’s decision had come at a time when the US aviation safety regulator had “strongly advised” the passengers not to turn on or charge their Note 7 smartphones during flights after reports of the devices catching fire.
On September 23, a Samsung Note 2 smartphone caught fire inside a Chennai-bound international flight of IndiGo with 175 passengers on board, leading to a major safety scare.
The scare prompted DGCA to issue an advisory to airlines, to avoid using Samsung Note series phones on board.The aviation safety regulator also ordered a probe and summoned Samsung officials.
The aircraft landed safely after the crew retrieved the smoking phone from an overhead luggage rack and put it in a container filled with water in the lavatory.
“The crew quickly identified minor smoke coming from the hat-rack of seat 23C,” it said. A fire extinguisher was also used, although IndiGo clarified there was no fire “but sparks were observed”.