Hot take (literally): phones and laptops catching fire are generally not a big deal--at least not as big as people seem to think they are. Incidents of rechargeable batteries catching fire are unfortunate and they are dangerous, but we should all really stop freaking out about them. Lithium-ion batteries, like the gas tank in your car, contain an enormous amount of potential energy. Under the right circumstances (or the wrong ones, depending on your proximity and love of pyrotechnics), they can heat up, expand, catch fire, and even explode. But it happens under such specific and infrequent circumstances that losing our collective minds every time one gets caught on video isn't a great long-term solution.
When George Zhao took the stage at CES this week, the president of Huawei's trying-to-be-hip Honor brand did everything short of ollie in on a skateboard. He offered a laundry list of reasons The Kids will love the impressive new Honor 6X smartphone, from the camera to the processor to something about it being smooth like a baby's skin. "We know young people like to have everything," Zhao said. "Today, we gave them double." He made it abundantly clear that Honor has tested the 6X to within an inch of its life and it will not, in fact, explode.
As more and more reports of failing Samsung Galaxy Note7 devices crop up, so, too, do videos of smoking smartphones -- a terrifying sight for the vast majority of users. What you'll notice in some of these videos is the sight of people handling the failing device as thought it's a hot plate of pasta instead of a very dangerous battery that could explode at any moment. SEE ALSO: New Gear VR headsets no longer work with Samsung's Galaxy Note7 So what should you do if your Note7 (or any other mobile device powered by a lithium ion battery) starts smoking? We asked a couple of the top experts and their answers are, in some cases, obvious -- others were quite surprising. Get away: "The best thing to do is to stand back and let the device burn or smoke -- you cannot stop it once it begins," Jeff Dahn, a professor of physics and atmospheric science at Canada's Dalhousie University who is currently working with Tesla on battery technology, told Mashable.
If you don't pay much attention to where you store your e-cigarette batteries, well, this video will probably make you change your mind. SEE ALSO: Intense video shows a vape exploding inside a dude's pocket A CCTV camera in a shopping centre in Leeds recorded an e-cigarette battery exploding in a man's pocket as he casually walked through a shop with a friend. The man, who was left with slight injuries, had spare lithium-ion batteries for his e-cigarette loose in his pocket. According to West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, the short circuit was caused when one of the batteries came into contact with a metal item in the pocket -- keys or coins. It is also possible that two batteries shorted one another.