Samsung sued over Galaxy S20 ‘bullet hole glass’ defect

by Joseph K. Clark

Customers are suing Samsung for not disclosing a defect that caused Samsung Galaxy S20 smartphone cameras to shatter unexpectedly.

Despite paying a high premium price for the phone, Samsung “refuses to cover the issue under its warranty,” according to the lawsuit filed by attorneys at Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP. The case was filed on April 27 and accused Samsung of fraud, breach of warranty, and violations of several consumer-protection laws.

The defect affects the back camera module’s glass covering that “shatters” randomly without any force placed on it, even if the phone is protected by the best Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra cases. The shatter leaves a prominent “bullet hole” pattern.


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The lawsuit added that consumers still have to pay $400 to send the phone back to Samsung to investigate the issue or pay $100 if the consumer purchased the Samsung care device insurance.

“Samsung sold its Galaxy S20 as a high-end option for consumers, with a ‘professional’ grade camera, charging upwards of $1,600 per device, only to have them suddenly lose a major aspect of their functionality,” Steve Berman, managing partner at Hagens Berman, said.

Berman, who is also the attorney representing the consumers in the case, said that this issue had caused duress to people during the pandemic when they needed a reliable mobile device, “yet Samsung has refused to deliver the reliability it promised its customers.”

In 2020, Samsung’s revenue was more than $200 billion, and in Q1 2020 captured 20% of the global smartphone market share. Samsung did indicate that this issue happened to one of its ambassadors and acknowledged the problem was “rooted in a single identifiable cause and attributable to Samsung.” But the lawsuit indicated that the company failed to initiate a recall.

The lawsuit calls for Samsung to pay for repairs and other damages faced due to the design defect and warranty breaches. “The suit also seeks compensation for affected customers regarding a loss of value in the product,” it said.

Affected products include smartphones in the Galaxy S20 lineup, including the Galaxy S20 FE. If you own one of these smartphones, click here to learn more about the lawsuit and your rights.

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