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Galaxy S4 bursts in flames while gaming, Hong Kong man claims, fire spreads to house and Mercedes

Posted: , by Daniel P.

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Galaxy S4 bursts in flames while gaming, Hong Kong man claims, fire spreads to house and Mercedes
A Hong Kong guy claims his Galaxy S4 burst into flames while he was gaming on the couch, startling him and forcing him to throw it under the sofa, which caught up fire in its turn, along with the curtains. 

He quickly ran out of the house with his wife and pets, only to see the home incinerated to the walls, and the fire spreading out to the Mercedes that was parked next to the building. 

While previous spontaneous combustion cases with the Galaxy S III and iPhones turned out to be caused by third party batteries or chargers, and Apple even issued a warning against using those, the Hong Kong man claims his Galaxy S4 was with the battery and charger it was packaged with.

What's not entirely clear is whether the S4 itself wasn't a counterfeit unit, as the man seems to have bought it from someone else, not to mention that the whole story starts from what appears to be a rather flammable couch, but, hey, the man was playing "Love Machine" on the device, after all.

Samsung Hong Kong has apparently already said it will investigate the matter, and do some chemical analysis magic to determine whether the S4 and its components were genuine, and were the real reason for the incident reported, so we'll keep an eye on the developments.

source: Xianguo via TheRegister

79 Comments
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posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:08 58

1. EXkurogane (Posts: 863; Member since: 07 Mar 2013)


Seems like Galaxy S4 should be renamed as Galaxy C4.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:37 12

10. neutralguy (Posts: 1152; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)


You sir made my day. Haha

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 18:01

73. MartianMe (unregistered)


WTF!!...how come these kind of sh1t are only happening in asia?

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:38 18

11. SlimSoulja86 (Posts: 642; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)


I think the man is trying his luck. Rich company? Well claim their device is the reason you lost you belongings and so they could pay. Oldest trick in the book, and yes, fanboys will believe this is Samsung's fault. Typical. If your fone is on fire why throw it under the sofa? Like really? I'm not convinced that this was S$'s fault.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:04 14

20. EXkurogane (Posts: 863; Member since: 07 Mar 2013)


I do sense conspiracy in this. The story is 'too epic' to be real. Must be made up.

Notice how most electrocution/burning/exploding stories only involve Samsung's flagships and iPhones, never HTC, Nokia, LG or any other brands.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:27 7

28. jedpatrickdatu (Posts: 146; Member since: 24 Jan 2013)


I agree. Also, it's suspicious that these phone explosions and electrocutions are happening just a few days or weeks after the other.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:29 9

29. gabrielvoica (Posts: 51; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)


might be a false story but when did you see a htc,nokia or lg to overheat like a samsung phone?
for example: i now own the htc one and before this i had the s4...i ditched the s4 because of overheating..to be more precise my s4 got a 65 degrees celsius measurement while the one with the same usage won't go higher than 44....personal experience...
i rooted the s4,flashed another rom and kernel just to solve this problem and it didn't do much...the phone was brand new...
same happened with my note 2 before this...i owned the whole galaxy lineup from sammy and everytime i noticed the overheating...
as for apple i have the ipad4 and trust me when i say that sometimes out of the sudden it gets extremely hot...and i'm talking when browsing the web not playing games or anything complex...
this is a real problem unfortunetely that i didn't find on any nokia or htc device that i owned...
they should focus more on this things instead of 8cores and crap...maybe with 8cores i can fry a chicken due to the heat...

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:45 1

30. EXkurogane (Posts: 863; Member since: 07 Mar 2013)


If your Galaxies are of the Exynos variant, that might be the reason. The only good thing about Exynos is cranking out a lot of power in performance and topping the benchmarks.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:52

35. gabrielvoica (Posts: 51; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)


they were exynos and the s4 was the snapdragon 600....

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 06:01 7

37. gabrielvoica (Posts: 51; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)


and about samsung....i know there are a lot of people saying this on every tech site but....the lag...it's just amazing how on a flagship device like the s4 with all that power inside the phone lagged...compared to the htc one the s4 is years behind...sorry but it's the truth...and also the battery life is horrible on the s4 mainly also because of the overheating..
it's a cool phone but it feels like they forgot to do something before releasing it...like actually try the device themselves...

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 06:13 4

40. EXkurogane (Posts: 863; Member since: 07 Mar 2013)


^ I know, The lag on Samsung devices. People deny it but even i also experienced it. And the demo units in Samsung stores are also the same but people will tell me "the crowd used it and randomly open apps without closing, thats why it lagged".

You may be able to solve the lag with custom firmwares, but making sure a phone works well right out of box is the OEM's responsibility, not customer's. They stuffed in too much bloatware into the S4.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 14:13 1

65. whysoserious (Posts: 316; Member since: 20 Jul 2012)


Setting the lag issue aside, i'm finding this guy's claims about this incident too hard to believe. Yes, phones tend to overheat during heavy use, but, seriously, a small device, capable of incinerating an entire house?! If it suddenly burned while playing with it, where's the burn on his hand? He could've suffered at least first degree burn on his hands if it's true.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 07:49 5

50. jacko1977 (Posts: 382; Member since: 11 Feb 2012)


as an owner of the i9500 and i9505 i have yet to see lag

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 08:32 8

52. lambchops (Posts: 4; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)


LOL, ya know.. i am sooooo sick of hearing people like you trying to put the wrong idea in other peoples heads. Ive had the original galaxy i9500, the s2, s3, s4, note 10.1, note 8.0, aaaaand galaxy camera, and of course ive experienced lag, what phone/tablet doesnt lag? exactly. My sisters both have the iphone 5, and god, not EVERYthing positive that comes out of there mouth, it reboots itself here and there, it heats up from moderate use aswell, it lags. And as for the htc one, quite the coincident that my dad has it.. but anyways, dont tell me that thing doesnt fricken lag, cuz it does. And it does about as often as my galaxy s4 does. Which would be a little bit here and there. And just so ya know, the htc one is warm almost everytime i use my dads phone.. no phone is perfect bud. In my opinion, Touchwiz is the most user friendly interface, and air view and air gesture are cool as hell and i use them all the time, and the screen on the s4 is definitely best in its class, and same with the 13 mp camera.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 09:02 3

53. gabrielvoica (Posts: 51; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)


for your own knowledge....i'm talking about personal experiences and i'm not trying to put ideas in others head...ok?so chill out...be happy with your device,i was not...and also to help you with your lag i recommend you deactivate the eye scrolling and air view and you will see that things realy improve...touchwiz is the thing that makes the phone lag...
as for the rest there is a thing called youtube if you wan't to see comparisons between these 2 and the problem is that pretty much everyone favors the one...
in every aspect...
i don't have time for fanboy wars because i really don't care...it's called choice...so everyone choses what ever he likes...
have a nice day!

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 09:25 3

57. lambchops (Posts: 4; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)


Haha, no offence, but your pretty stupid when it comes to knowledge about this kinda stuff eh? lol, smart scroll/air view/air gesture/smart pause could potentially cause the phone to lag, but having them turned on mostly just kills your battery, clearing the ram is what will call for less lag.. just letting ya know. Im just sick of people knocking down the s4 because maybe there phone isnt as good, or just feel the need to share there negative opinion about the s4. Im not a fan boy anymore than you are, i just dont like being told that my top of the line phone lags all the time and overheats. Meanwhile, i havent really had any problems with it.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 15:55

69. gabrielvoica (Posts: 51; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)


first of all junior we are not the same age so watch your language!
second ...you say you own a s4 but still you're using your father's htc one!
third i use fast reboot and task killer on all my phones and also background data is off...so there is nothin g unnecesary running in the background..
4th...this is a public forum so if i wan't to express my opinion regarding my own experience with a device i will do it and i don't give a f....about what you like or don't...if you love your device junior so much then you should get married and have children together ....
5 th....there is a thing called education and respect ..you should learn about them..they might actually help you later in life...
6 th....i'm pretty sure that i know a lot more about this things than you know so please...

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 07:10 6

46. vincelongman (Posts: 946; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)


I am calling BS, I don't believe the explosion could have been that bad.

I've read of other phone's battery exploding including the iPhone 5 (while man was calling) and HTC One X (while on kitchen top, idle), Note II (in boys pocket, idle) and S3 (in ladys pocket, idle but third party).

People, just to stop, its unfortunately this happens, but its like a couple phones out of millions.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 09:09 3

56. gabrielvoica (Posts: 51; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)


it's obvious he was lying...

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 07:26 1

48. nobelset (Posts: 268; Member since: 17 Oct 2012)


Dude my lumia 800 gets so HOT I could never use it while charging. I don't know about the other lumias but my note 2 NEVER gets as hot.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 09:04 1

54. gabrielvoica (Posts: 51; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)


all phones get hot if you use them while charging...

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 10:39 2

62. Bilpocalypse (Posts: 301; Member since: 13 Oct 2012)


My Nokia overheats occasionally. This isn't just a Samsung issue.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 15:55

68. Zegareke (Posts: 1; Member since: 23 Jun 2013)


I wonder if they can find out chemically whether that c4 was overclocked and loaded with tons of background apps in case it was an original sammy.
I see nothing wrong in throwing away burning things. I don't think he was like "Oh, so it's burning, well, where should I throw it" rather just threw and it landed there randomly.
But also he could just smoke pot there while playing on s4, someone came in, so he threw the s4 under the couch and pretended he wasn't playing.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:43 9

16. RaKithAPeiRiZ (Posts: 1301; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)


S-plode

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 10:25 1

60. Caralho (Posts: 119; Member since: 18 Jun 2012)


What the heck is "Love Machine"???

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:11 6

2. pwnarena (Posts: 824; Member since: 15 Feb 2013)


"...startling him and forcing him to throw it under the sofa..."

makes the claim dubious. i've always thought hong kongers are some of the most intelligent people in the world. they have the highest average IQ in the world.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:14 1

3. TakashiDeo (banned) (Posts: 26; Member since: 20 Jul 2013)


why dont chinese phones explode?? and come in news
which are made of more cheap materials....
samsung needs to carry out some serious investigation

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:19 6

5. EXkurogane (Posts: 863; Member since: 07 Mar 2013)


Everything made in China explodes, except bombs.
I have read cases that even adjustable office chair explodes (the gas/liquid in the hydraulic system).

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 07:08 1

44. Dingy_cellar_dweller (Posts: 181; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)


Yea, he was testing a new after market charger thats going to be available on ebay soon.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:18 8

4. boosook (Posts: 896; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


LOL! You don't REALLY believe this absurd story, right? Your phone catches fire in your hands and you throw it… under the sofa? And when you realize what you've done you don't move the sofa but you let it burn?

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:40 3

13. SlimSoulja86 (Posts: 642; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)


My point exactly. I should butn my house down and claim it is my iPhone. Easy money. Or so he thinks...

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:24 4

6. Damitel (Posts: 65; Member since: 21 Apr 2013)


This man looks so pathetic and worse is his story. Samsung investigate this matter. This is unbelievably ridiculous!

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:27

7. mi55u (unregistered)


Dafuq house and Mercedes?

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:50

32. RaKithAPeiRiZ (Posts: 1301; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)


hide yo kids ..hide yo wife ,Samsung is coming

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:35 1

8. whoyton2 (banned) (Posts: 142; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)


"He claims that he did not use a third party battery or charger".....sure dude! With all due respect a s4 doesn't just spontaneously combust!

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 06:05 2

38. darkkjedii (Posts: 10102; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


It is an electrical device with a battery. You never know, glad they all made out safely though. I do wonder about the validity of these stories though.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 14:40

66. jackhammeR (Posts: 1548; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)


are you an engineer? Sh%^ happens

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:36 4

9. JMartin22 (Posts: 712; Member since: 30 Apr 2013)


This is like the 4th article in the past month of a phone zapping or imploding on someone? It all happens to reside in China, too. They need to stop using cheap third party chargers that don't regulate electricity in a stable and safe matter or stop buying cheap knock off Chinese phones that imitate the real thing, only to have them set ablaze.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 07:04

43. darkkjedii (Posts: 10102; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


So does this apply to the iPhone also, or only Samsung?

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 13:16

64. androidfanboy (Posts: 162; Member since: 24 Jun 2013)


are you retarded or something?

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 15:17

67. darkkjedii (Posts: 10102; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


Yes now bring my yellow helmet.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 17:21 1

71. androidfanboy (Posts: 162; Member since: 24 Jun 2013)


Grow up and take your head out of your arse

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:40

12. xoxoGeorges (Posts: 194; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


Designed for humans

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:42 2

14. RaKithAPeiRiZ (Posts: 1301; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)


inspired by explosives

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:45 1

17. tiara6918 (Posts: 1322; Member since: 26 Apr 2012)


Instead of their slogan life companion, they should change it to death companion

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:47 2

18. whoyton2 (banned) (Posts: 142; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)


Well that bombed...

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:13

24. papss (unregistered)


Is that your new comment? New material please ;)

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:51

33. whoyton2 (banned) (Posts: 142; Member since: 19 Jun 2013)


It was a joke....bomb....blow up!

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:43 2

15. tiara6918 (Posts: 1322; Member since: 26 Apr 2012)


Samsung Galaxy S-plode

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:47 2

31. xperiaDROID (Posts: 5047; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


Samsung Galaxy S-Flame
You buy it, You suffer it, You deserve it. The Galaxy S-Flame knows You.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:52 2

34. RaKithAPeiRiZ (Posts: 1301; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)


Samsung Galaxy S4 - AfterLife Companion

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 04:52 3

19. w-t-f (Posts: 42; Member since: 21 Aug 2012)


I need to redecorate my house,and while I'm doing that I could use a new Benz.. let's get a Touch Wiz to do the job.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:09 2

21. Sniggly (Posts: 6695; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


Pretty much every case of a cell phone doing something like this in the last five or six years has been the result of extenuating circumstances not related to the normal hardware or usage of the phone.

Galaxy S3 caught on fire? It was thrown in a microwave after water damage.

iPhone 4/S caught on fire on a flight to Australia? A shoddy repair job on the screen caused a screw to fall out of its hole inside the screen and short the charging plate.

Galaxy S3 exploded in a girl's pants? Third party battery.

That's not to say that a defective unit can't exist-hell, I see defective units of every cell phone out there-but many of these sensationalized stories turn out to have factors which are unusual and turn out to be critical to the outcome.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:12 1

22. papss (unregistered)


Why would he be gaming at his house on a cell anyways? Theirs this great thing called game consoles with real controllers and not a touch screen with no feedback.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:20 2

26. Sniggly (Posts: 6695; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


When I had my Note I gamed on it all the time. Even on my Atrix I still play Jetpack Joyride like a fiend. You bet your ass when I get the Moto X (or Droid Maxx) I'll load that s**t up with Canabalt, Temple Run, Dead Trigger, Bejeweled, Sector Strike, Gun Bros 2, Pew Pew 2, Osmos, Six Guns, and probably twenty more awesome games that have come out since I gave up looking for new ones.

posted on 31 Jul 2013, 08:11

77. _PHug_ (Posts: 380; Member since: 11 Oct 2011)


What else you going to do on the toilet?

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:12 2

23. Sondae (Posts: 182; Member since: 02 Jan 2013)


Probably Samsung will tell that the person is using 3rd party battery thats why it explode again like what happen on the Switzerland lady. Kinda odd that his house turned into ash that bad that it caused by s4. Make me think his house has lot of flammable material that he didnt try to stop the fire.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:20 4

25. Just.Me (Posts: 23; Member since: 24 Apr 2013)


1. the phone has to get really hot before it can flame
2. he shoild have seen smoke before the flames.
3. He should have got a smell before.
4. Even if it did flame, He threw the phone so the battery should have came off - Stopped burning.

There isno way any phone could do this

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:21

27. Lyngdoh (Posts: 221; Member since: 06 Sep 2012)


Embedded batteries doesn't suck after all.

posted on 30 Jul 2013, 05:54 1

36. rantao333 (Posts: 192; Member since: 21 May 2013)


samsung fans try to be rational now, same thing dint happens to apple cases.lol

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