Samsung is fighting the gray market through blockades. If you receive the fateful message, your Galaxy will become a paperweight
Bad news if you are from Mexico and have bought a Samsung mobile outside of the company’s own store. After some rumors and warnings, Samsung is blocking mobile phones purchased on the gray market.
If you are reading us from there, we will tell you what the problem is, what is going to happen and what is the solution that the company provides. Small spoiler: it means buying a new mobile phone in the official store, but with a discount.
Samsung’s blockade is retroactive
The news broke a few hours ago and the truth is that it did not come as a surprise to many. With this lock, Samsung becomes the third company after ZTE and Motorola in turning cell phones purchased on the gray market into paperweights.
If you are Spanish, this gray market thing may sound like smuggling or something like that, but nothing like that. And it is that, Unlike the black market, the gray market is not illegal, but products sold within that ‘category’ are being sold without the official license. This means that the manufacturers have not authorized distribution in that sales channel.
In fact, how they collect our colleagues from Xataka México, Mercado Libre falls into that category, but so does Amazon. That is, if Samsung (Motorola, ZTE and whatever company) has not authorized the sale of a device on Amazon, but we can find it there, it is a gray market sale.
There are companies that do not want their devices to be sold outside of their own stores or from partners in each country, Samsung being one of them and sending notifications to mobile phones that have been acquired in this gray market. You can see an example below:
Aside from the message, this is what the company says:
“At Samsung Mexico we are committed to safety and compliance with local regulations in each of the countries where we operate. As of October 11, we will begin to block those smartphones that come from the gray market, and that have been activated as of September 21, 2023 in Mexico.”
The solution? It is also provided by Samsung itself:
“For users whose smartphones are blocked, we offer a 30% discount coupon, which can be redeemed through our official website www.samsung.com/mx or in the Samsung Shop APP, available for Android devices. The discount code will be valid until December 31, 2023.”
That is, you will not be able to use your cell phone, but you can buy a new one on the official website with a 30% discount. You can also buy it at a point of sale authorized by the company.
From Xataka México they have contacted PROFECO (Federal Consumer Protection Agency, being a public body), who have told them that consumers have the right to choose freely where to buy a device, but from Samsung they assure that this action is not against the law in Mexico.
And something that has especially bothered about this blockade is that it is a retroactive measure. That is, Samsung has just stated the same, but in its statement include devices activated from September 21, 2023 in Mexico.
In short, if you have received the message, the best thing you can do is try to talk to the point of sale, since there are stores that They will take care of the warranty. Also, since they will block activated devices starting September 21, you can always try to return it.