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Galaxy S4 FIREBALL ATE MY HOUSE, claims Hong Kong man

Was the 'Love Machine' too hot to handle?

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

According to Mr Du, he was playing a quick game of Love Machine on his Galaxy S4 when it exploded into flame, causing him to cast it onto the alarmingly flammable sofa and thus gutting his whole house.

Thankfully no one was seriously hurt, both Du and his wife got out if their Hong Kong apartment with minor injuries as Xianguo.com reports, but he remains adamant that phone, charger and battery were all legitimate Samsung parts and that despite this his house has been destroyed.

Apparently the blaze spread to his Merc too, but there aren't any pics of that.

There's enough energy stored in a cellphone battery to power a decent fireball, even if it's not plugged into the charger as Du's was, but careful design and testing normally prevents explosions in all but the cheapest of components. One relies on a brand, such as Samsung, to be compliant with safety regulations and fearful of the bad publicity involved with burning the balls of a customer.

Pattern batteries, which match the physical shape of the proper part but not the specifications, are always a risk. The brand tends to be unknown, and unscrupulous retailers will sometimes sell them as branded kit, and most of the time both merchant and customer get away with it - but not every time.

Samsung Hong Kong says it is looking into the matter, and a chemical analysis of the charred remains should establish if it really came from a Samsung factory. Previous enquiries have found non-Samsung pattern parts to be the culprit, and likely this one will too, but the investigations cost money and there will always be some people calling cover-up and conspiracy: another reason for manufacturers to solder their batteries into place. ®

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