Another Galaxy phone explodes: why Lithium-Ion should die, not Samsung

The amount of smartphones that explode every year has gotten entirely out of hand, as one Galaxy S6 Edge user was loathe to find this week. The user goes by the screen name ReturnThroughAether and posted a number of images of the aftermath of a Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge explosion that happened overnight last night. The bad news for Samsung is that this was a Samsung smartphone. The good news is that this should further encourage research into alternate battery technology.

Explosions of this sort have happened to smartphones from most if not all major phone brands over the past 10 years. Lithium Ion batteries are volatile, and they occasionally fail. The smartphones we have in our pocket are prone to explosion – it's rare, but it certainly can happen.

Should I be worried about my phone?

Users of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 would be worried about an explosion, yes, absolutely. Samsung recalled the Galaxy Note 7 because it wasn't manufactured correctly, and it has a larger-than-normal chance of exploding. But that's where the worry should end – sort of.

The Galaxy S6 Edge seen in the images above is not known for its propensity to explode. It's just as likely to explode as any other average smartphone out on the market today – it just happens to be a Samsung-branded phone. The same goes for all other Samsung phones at the moment – none are more prone to explosion than any other – save, again, the Note 7.

How can I avoid explosions?

Do not buy cheap charging cords or cheap wall chargers. Do not buy power accessories that are significantly cheaper than those made by companies that can be trusted. I'm not going to make a definitive list of all accessory-makers that can be trusted, but there are a couple of ways to check.

Those accessory manufacturers "officially licensed" by Apple are the only ones to be trusted for Apple products. Those accessory manufacturers with stand-alone brand names are generally OK to trust for Android devices. Android device accessory makers are a bit more difficult to vet than Apple, but there are a few brand names that we trust implicitly. SEE: Belkin, Anker, Mophie.

The image above comes from Digimoto where they show how easy it is to pull apart a charger made by off-brand companies. This is just one way to tell if an accessory-maker is worth their salt. If a charger can be torn apart with one's bare hands, it's not safe enough to use.

Cheap off-brand accessories for charging devices make those devices far more prone to explosion. Accessory makers are very rarely held accountable for these explosions, so their manufacturers care little for the end result.

Why is this happening?!

Explosions continue to happen because of cheap accessories – yes – but the market's comfort with Lithium Ion batteries is at least partially to blame as well. A company as large as Samsung should be making a public matter of researching and finding new battery technology. Even one explosion should be enough to force change.

It's high time this becomes more than a matter of making charging faster or making what we have as safe as possible. It's time to push for a new sort of battery altogether.