The $1980 Samsung Galaxy Fold has been turning major heads since it was announced, in ways both flaterring and unflaterring. However, there is no doubt that its arrival signals a new trend. One that of The Foldable phone. And there can be little doubt that it’s made its mark in a big way.
It’s announced its arrival with more eloquence that what was originally expected. The price tag in itself, puts it squarely in the category of a luxury item. Samsung on its own part, have not been shy at all about copping to it. Talking to The Verge, Kate Beaumont, director of product, services and commercial strategy at Samsung UK was very open about its exclusive nature: “This is a super premium device, and we want to make sure it has a concierge-like service and experience, so it’s not going to be on display in all stores.”
“ You’re not going to see it on the stands, we want to make sure it’s a very personal experience. There will be quite intensive aftercare that goes with it as well.” She added. Further elaborating on its ultra high-end nature.
This move has also put Samsung ahead of Apple, its biggest rival. A folding phone, as of right now, is simply not within the capacity of the iconic iPhone manufacturer. Goldman Sachs analyst Rod Hall emphasised on this by saying: “We see this as challenging for Apple who could find themselves with no access to the critical flexible OLED technology for which we believe Samsung has at least a two year lead over other display competitors. “
In fact, when it comes to the innovation crown, Samsung is going after that as well. The ‘foldability’ of the device can pretty much be directly compared to Apple’s abolishment of physical keyboards in its devices. A lot of this has been driven by people’s desire for larger screens. They want to see their photos at scale, and have the full experience while playing games. They also want to watch movies they can actually see. Samsung has correctly identified this as a key attribute, and the ‘foldability’ in itself acts as a great measure to make the large screen fit inside your pocket.
Back in the day, it took Apple four years to catch up to Samsung when the latter began setting the trend in large screens. As of today, iPhone sales are in actual decline without any hint of a new iPhone format in sight. So the pressure lies on apple now.
Samsung’s competitors like Huawei and Xiaomi, who are also planning to launch foldable phones soon. They will however be forced to drive down prices as the biggest players are also competing on the ergonomics and functionality of the new device—something that hasn’t happened in the industry for many years.
Samsung, however should have no issues hanging on to premium prices, and get things right for themselves with their newest endeavor.