Asustek issues phone recall in Japan

By Natasha Li  /  Staff reporter

Thu, Apr 04, 2019 - Page 12

Asustek Computer Inc (華碩電腦) yesterday issued a recall in Japan of ZenFone Max Pro (M2) (ZB631KL) smartphones sold from March 15 due to a faulty component, the company said in a statement on its Web site.

The smartphone’s radio frequency band does not comply with Japanese radio laws, the statement said.

Asustek declined to comment on how many phones it expects to recall in Japan.

A Central News Agency report yesterday, without citing its source, estimated the figure at about 10,000 phones. 

Users are advised not to continue using the phone as it might breach Japanese laws, Asustek said.

The company, headquartered in Taipei’s Beitou District (北投), offered two solutions to phone owners: Either return the phone or exchange it for another one that complies with Japanese regulations from the middle of this month.

The mobile phone business has dragged Asustek’s bottom line, with the company posting its first quarterly loss in nine years in the final quarter of last year.

The company incurred losses of NT$2.82 billion (US$91.51 million) in the fourth quarter, when it booked a NT$6 billion one-time write-off from its mobile phone business.

Last quarter’s losses drove down the company’s full-year net profit to NT$4.24 billion, plunging 73 percent from NT$15.55 billion in 2017.

The company in December last year unveiled a turnaround plan, shifting its focus to gaming phones and smartphones with higher-end cameras, rather than targeting the mass market.

Asustek co-CEO S.Y. Hsu (許先越) told an investors’ conference last month that the company aims to turn around its mobile phone business in three years.

Shares of Asustek climbed 0.22 percent to close at NT$226 in Taipei trading yesterday, recovering slightly from its 52-week low of NT$195.50.

Additional reporting by Lisa Wang