Samsung Group’s electronics division on Friday began a global recall of its Galaxy Note7 model following reports that certain handsets had exploded because of defective batteries. In an official statement, the company said it had found a battery cell issue after conducting a “thorough investigation” into the matter. It also said it was stopping all sales of the model.

There have been 35 reports of exploding batteries from around the world so far, the statement said, adding that it was continuing its investigation with its suppliers to identify all affected handsets. Apologising for the defect, the smartphone giant gave its assurance that it will “voluntarily replace” Note7 devices already purchased by customers “over the coming weeks”.

The recall was ordered just a week before Samsung’s rival Apple Inc is set to launch the newest iteration of its iPhone handset, BBC reported. The Note7, which released last month, has been praised by both critics and consumers. In July, the company reported its best quarterly earnings in two years after strong sales of its mobiles. It has predicted a continued increase in demand for its smartphones and tablets for the remainder of this year.