Samsung's reputation took a huge hit last year. It was so huge that the company dropped from being in the top ten to almost missing the top 50 of the U.S. Reputation Poll.
Harris Poll released the results of its U.S. Reputation Quotient Report last Monday and clearly, Samsung was the biggest loser. The Korean conglomerate placed third in 2015 and seventh last year in the Harris Poll before plummeting to 49th place. Its sudden fall from grace is mainly attributed to the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco. It was not, however, the only controversy that the company was embroiled in last year.
It's still fresh in the minds of many that the Korean tech giant was forced to recall and later completely cease production of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 due to the risk of explosion. After months of investigation, the company revealed that the exploding batteries were caused mainly by design flaws and manufacturing defects. Aside from that, Samsung also had to recall a number of its top-loading washing machines after a number of owners reported excessive vibrations leading to the top coming off. The proverbial nail in the coffin was the arrest of Samsung executive Lee Jae-Yong for accusations of bribery among other charges.
The Harris Poll was conducted from Nov. 28 to Dec. 16, 2016, and involved 30,519 American adults. Among the factors considered for the poll were products and services, social responsibility, vision and leadership, emotional appeal, financial performance, and workplace environment. Amazon topped the list for the second year in a row. It has been in the top ten for nine straight years now. Samsung's bitter rival, Apple, fared a lot better by placing fifth.
Engadget noted that the result of the Harris Poll is the complete opposite of a similar poll conducted by Reuters and Ipsos. In that poll, it was determined that the galaxy Note 7 debacle did not damage the brand's reputation. It must be noted, however, that the Reuters poll was completed before news of Lee's arrest started trickling in.