Lamya Bouyirdane told the Associated Press that she noticed her phone was very hot after she took it from her son at a family gathering at their home in Pau, France. She said she threw the device away when she realized it had “swollen up” and smoke was coming out.
“I panicked when I saw the smoke and I had the reflex to throw it away,” Bouyirdane said.
The phone then caught on fire and the back flew off; her partner quickly extinguished the flames.
The report follows an announcement last month by Samsung that it had permanently discontinued its line of Galaxy Note 7 smartphones amid reports of fire and explosions in the devices. There has also been at least one report of a fire in a Galaxy S7 Edge, which was not included in the recall, which means that Samsung may be putting out fires across its entire product range.
The company said in a statement that it was unable to comment on the case in France until it could examine the phone. However, it assure customers that “issues with the Galaxy Note 7 are isolated to only that model.”
William Stofega, a mobile phone expert at market research firm IDC, told the AP that this was the first report of a battery fire in the Galaxy J5, and most likely an isolated incident.
“These reports tend to cluster,” he said.
The Samsung Galaxy debacle highlights the pressures tech companies face as they search for more powerful, lightweight, and quick recharging batteries to power today’s electronic devices. Lithium-ion batteries first became popular in the early 1990s when they were used in Camcorders and other handheld video devices. The batteries are useful because they can store large amounts of energy in a small space; however, this same quality also makes them more dangerous. The more energy stored, the greater the potential for fire and explosion.