The recent news of Samsung’s challenge to Apple’s iconic iPhone paints a picture that the landscape that Apple initially carved with their popular iOS devices will be shared and impacted by Samsung. Competition will continue to be fierce as these tech giants try to outdo each other to place their devices in your hands.
Samsung?s Smartphone Challenge
Samsung appears to have become the world’s largest mobile phone manufacturer, passing Finland’s Nokia, top since 1998, as Samsung Electronics reported record first-quarter results.
Though the company did not reveal precise numbers, some analysts reckon that it sold more smartphones ? 44.5m ? in the first three months of the year than Apple’s 35.1m for its iPhone. Overall, they calculated that it shipped 93.5m mobile phones, compared with 82.7m for Nokia.
Samsung’s estimated total gave it a 30.6% share of the smartphone market. Apple’s sales gave it a 24.1% share.
Samsung?s Galaxy series is giving the iPhone a run for their money. Their popular Galaxy S series seems to be getting a foothold on the smartphone market once dominated by Apple?s iPhone. Samsung?s other smartphone offering such as the large screened Galaxy Note has also attracted quite a following.
The success of Samsung?s line of phones is largely due in part that they are operating on Google?s Android platform that makes all the apps on Google play available on Samsung?s Android Phones. The other contributing factor is that they load up on all the hardware features that iPhone fans can only hope for. Features such as Near Field Communication (NFC), and larger screens which Apple are slow or unwilling to implement (The iPhone 5 is rumored to get a larger screen).
Apple isn?t letting this go down easy for Samsung. They are fighting Samsung on every legal front trying to disrupt the Galaxy?s sales in various markets.
Apple and Samsung have been involved in a huge patent-based legal fight that spanned across four continents, with the two companies suing and counter-suing each other in 10 different markets. There are well over 30 lawsuits between the two at this time, and even though Apple obtained the most favorable (temporary) rulings so far in various countries, the fight is not yet over.
Now, we hear that Apple filed on Tuesday a new motion against Samsung in the U.S., seeking to obtain a preliminary injunction against Galaxy S3 sales in the region, as the device is apparently infringing certain Apple patents.
My Take on This
It seems like Apple is fight their competition on the legal front when they actually should be matching Samsung on the ?I got one better than yours? front. There was once a time when the reason for buying any other smartphone was because it was cheaper and any other phone ?other? than an iPhone was a wannabe. The case isn?t so now with Apple rumored to be the one following suit of the larger screens on the Galaxy series.
I have previously maintained that Apple could have sucked the oxygen out of the competition by launching varying versions of the iPhone ? like a mini iPhone to kill the lower priced competition, or an iPhone with keyboard to jolt the likes of Blackberry.
Some have said that such a move would ruin the form factor or artistic balance that Apple dictates. However, the million dollar industry in iPhone cases should be indicative on how much most iPhone users place of the form factor of the iPhone.
Whatever the case, there is a new top dog in town and Apple has to share its pedestal with it.
On a brighter note, as consumers, we will be spoilt with a bouquet of phone features ? even larger screens, keyboards vs touchscreens and better screen and antennae technology while keeping our favorite apps available on their respective App Stores.