Android phones ignite safety concerns


Seton Hall banned the Galaxy Note 7 after reports that batteries were spontaneously exploding. Photo via Flickr.

Seton Hall has officially banned the Galaxy Note 7 smartphone from campus after several reports that batteries on the recently released device from Samsung have exploded while charging.

Samsung recently recalled the smartphone and the Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends that all Galaxy Note 7 phones sold before Sept. 15 be returned.

An email was sent on Sept. 16 to the SHU community to inform the campus of the phone’s ban.

“When a student or a member of the community uses an unsafe item, the university reserves the right to confiscate that object,” Dr. Tracy Gottlieb, vice president of Student Services, said in an email interview. “On the Seton Hall campus, when it comes to fire safety, we are extremely cautious. And one of the great things about our community is that they appreciate the attention to safety.”

Gottlieb said the Department of Information Technology reported to her that SHU is an “iPhone campus,” meaning that most students at the university own the Apple product.

There have been no reported incidents on campus involving the Galaxy Note 7. Despite this, Gottlieb added, “If any of our students have the Galaxy Note 7, it is imperative that they return it.”

Samantha Dyar, a freshman theater major, said that she thinks the administration is slightly overreacting but understands that the reason SHU has such strict fire safety regulations is because of the January 2000 Boland Hall fire that killed three students.

“If I had the Galaxy Note 7, I would not be happy,” Dyar said.

Heather Kwityn, a junior diplomacy and economics double major, agreed with Dyar’s reaction to the issue.

Recalling the phone seems to follow SHU’s cautious style regarding fire safety, Kwityn said, “but if there haven’t been any incidents on campus, it seems to be blown out of proportion.”

Isabel Soisson can be reached at

Author: Isabel Soisson

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