Samsung halts production of troubled Galaxy Note 7 phone

HONG KONG — Samsung has halted production of its Galaxy Note 7 smartphone as fears spread that even replacement versions of the device can burst into flames.

A person familiar with the matter confirmed the temporary suspension to CNN after South Korean news agency Yonhap first reported the news.

The announcement comes after cell phone carriers in the United States and Australia said they would stop offering replacement Note 7s amid concerns that the new versions are no safer from fire risk than the originals.

Soon after the Galaxy Note 7 hit stores in August, some users reported that their phones were catching fire. Samsung officially recalled the phones last month, blaming faulty batteries for overheating the phones and causing them to ignite.

Replacement phones were supposed to solve the issue, and users started swapping in their old devices. But some customers have been reporting the same dangerous problems with their new phones.

In the past week, an American user reported his replacement phone caught fire, even though it wasn’t plugged in. And on Wednesday, smoke started billowing from a replacement Galaxy Note 7 aboard a Southwest Airline plane before it departed, prompting the flight’s cancellation.