Samsung’s phenomenal phablet flame-out with its Galaxy Note 7 (documented in our timeline here), which overheated and even burst into flames due to a lithium ion battery problem, easily qualifies as the year’s biggest tech screw-up. Apple, late-night comics and others rejoiced, while Android fans went through the painful process of returning their recalled phones.
Samsung issued an apology in November on its website and took out full-page advertisements in major U.S. newspapers reading: "An important tenet of our mission is to offer best-in-class safety and quality. Recently, we fell short on this promise. For this we are truly sorry. A careful Note 7 investigation is underway and the findings will be shared when the process is complete...We will re-examine every aspect of the device, including all hardware, software, manufacturing and the overall battery structure. We will move as quickly as possible, but will take the time needed to get the right answers."