Samsung confirmed that the feature is recently activated in South Africa after a number of Samsung TVs were taken from a company warehouse during a wave of protest and unrest last month. It’s not clear, though, from Samsung’s description whether the feature is only intended to combat large-scale theft, or if it will ever be used to help individual consumers.
The company said the technology has been “already pre-loaded on all Samsung TV products” and “ensures that the television sets can only be used by the rightful owners with a valid proof of purchase.”
Samsung will require the serial code of the stollen TV (s) to activate the “Television Block Function”. When the set connects to the internet, it checks its serial code against a list on Samsung’s servers and disables all TV functionality if it finds a match.