Today this has been confirmed by the company itself, through a news release that focuses on how it's going to "recycle" the giant pile of returned Note7 units that it has in its possession.
The first step in that process is refurbishing units or renting them (whatever that may mean). The second step involves detaching salvageable components from the phones, in order to reuse them. And third, if all else fails, "processes such as metals extraction shall be performed using environmentally friendly methods".
Regarding the sale of refurbished units, Samsung hasn't shared any actual details such as where that will happen and when. All it's giving us at the moment is that "applicability is dependent upon consultations with regulatory authorities and carriers as well as due consideration of local demand". The exact markets in which these will be offered, as well as release dates, will apparently be "determined accordingly".
That rumor from February which talked about this said the refurbished handsets would be sold in emerging markets such as India and Vietnam. They will allegedly come with new, smaller batteries. Other parts could be changed too. In order to be sure exactly which, we're going to have to wait for another announcement from Samsung on the matter.
UPDATE: Here's a statement Samsung made to The Verge regarding the refurbished Note7s:
The objective of introducing refurbished devices is solely to reduce and minimize any environmental impact. The product details including the name, technical specification and price range will be announced when the device is available. Samsung will not be offering refurbished Galaxy Note 7 devices for rent or sale in the US.
So it sounds like the refurbished units may not even be called Galaxy Note7 when they go on sale. That's not entirely unexpected, given how the public has come to associate that name with exploding batteries.
i will buy one, for my own use.. one, for my wife.. one for my mother.. and another for my brother. my father in law's also waiting for this. i am not wholly impressed with the S8/S8+, and i've tested the Note7 before the recall and it w...
i will advice they bring it to west Africa, Nigeria it will be gone the very first month it arrive into the country but if price is reasonable....
It boils down to price. If the price is right people will buy it regardless!