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Samsung is recalling about 160,000 of its cell phones because of a software flaw that may leave the devices unable to connect with 911 emergency operators in certain no-service areas.
The affected cell phones are Samsung's “Jitterbug” version, model numbers SPH-a110 and SPH-a120, sold at stores and online from March 2008 through May 2009, according to a News Release from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The problem is that when the phones are in a no-service area, they may display a message that reads “out of range, try again later,” even when callers are trying to connect to 911 in an emergency.
The Samsung "Jitterbug" cell phones, which feature larger keys and a simplistic number of functions, "are aimed at seniors and others who want a device without too many bells and whistles," according to the Wall Street Journal.
Samsung Telecommunications of America and San Diego-based Jitterbug are working to contact phone owners to schedule a free software upgrade. But CPSC is advising people who own the affected phones to call Samsung if they haven't already been contacted regarding the recall.
See the CPSC News Release on the Samsung Jitterbug recall for detailed product descriptions and company contact information.