Samsung Must Defend Would-Be Class Action Over Watch Battery Life

A Samsung Electronics Co. corporate flag flies outside the company's Seocho office building in Seoul, South Korea, on Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018. A South Korean appeals court on Monday let Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee walk free from prison after suspending his sentence for bribery, a stunning reversal that raises questions about the government’s ability to reform the nation’s most powerful corporations. Photographer: Jean Chung/Bloomberg

Samsung must defend a would-be class action alleging it misrepresented information about the battery life on a smart watch.

Samsung Electronics America Inc. won dismissal of two claims by lead plaintiff David W. Noble stemming from his 2014 purchase of a Samsung Galaxy Gear S Smartwatch for $199.

The suit alleges Samsung represented that the smartwatch battery would last 24 to 48 hours without being recharged. But Noble’s device only last about four hours between charges, his suit said.

Claims under the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act and for unjust enrichment were dismissed Feb. 8 by the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey.

But Samsung must defend claims for fraud, negligent misrepresentation, and for breach of express and implied warranties, the court said.

The court said the rejected claim under the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act may be refiled under the laws of Georgia, where the watch was purchased and the plaintiff resides.

Similar would-be class actions are proceeding against Apple over iPhone battery life.

Samsung is already defending would-be consumer class actions alleging eight phone models lost value because of their propensity to overheat, catch fire or explode. The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation has been considering when the suits benefit from consolidation for pretrial purposes.

Plaintiffs’ attorneys include Lite, DePalma, Greenberg. Samsung’s attorneys include Riker, Danzig, Scherer, Hyland, Perretti.

The case is Noble v. Samsung Elecs. Am., Inc., 2018 BL 45414, D.N.J., No. 15-3713, 2/8/18.