The ambiguity is caused by fact Samsung sidestepped a formal recall.
The Federal Aviation Administration on Thursday strongly advised flyers to neither use nor charge a Galaxy Note 7 while on a plane. However, the agency did not actually ban the transport of the devices.
“In light of recent incidents and concerns raised by Samsung about its Galaxy Note 7 devices, the Federal Aviation Administration strongly advises passengers not to turn on or charge these devices on board aircraft and not to stow them in any checked baggage,” the FAA said in a statement.
Samsung is replacing all Note 7 devices globally after 35 reported incidents in which a battery flaw led to fire or explosions.
However, the company has yet to work with U.S. government agencies on the kind of formal recall that would make the sale of such devices illegal, a distinction that has raised the ire of federal officials.
A formal recall would have made sale of the Note 7 illegal. Consumer Reports has also urged Samsung to issue such a recall, as is standard in the U.S. for safety-related issues.