It's finally here! Samsung's folding screen phone, the next big thing that will ignite fantasies and empty wallets all over the smartphone world! Or, probably not.
Galaxy Fold is a search engine, like a flagship supercar or an extremely rare luxury watch. It's the phone you're pulling over, but not the one you buy. Samsung knows this, it's hard to imagine that they don't, with a price tag that makes Apple's most expensive iPhone look cheap compared to. And they are good at it. Because Galaxy Fold is a huge gig from one of the only phone manufacturers that can do it. And how this product cycle plays out, Samsung wins.
Samsung gave Galaxy Fold pride in its pre-Mobile World Congress press event, with both the event's tagline and leading position secured for the daring new design. But that's not what Samsung actually invested in: it's obviously the Galaxy S10. Look no further than the presenter if you need proof.
Galaxy Fold was introduced by a vice president of the marketing department. But when Samsung's CEO DJ Koh came out and released a brief demonstration of the Galaxy Fold hardware, it was Galaxy S10 + which he personally introduced.
This is because Samsung this year will sell a lot of Galaxy S phones this year. Even with the alarming price increases (roughly in line with Samsung's only main competitor, Apple), promotional offers and financing opportunities will ease the financial pain of the new new model. But even someone who might justify a $ 1000 hit to his budget would be reticent to double it for Fold.
Want more proof? Fold uses a small (with modern standards) 4.6 inch front screen, probably so small on such a large device because Samsung needed every cubic millimeter to jump into other hardware around the inner hinge and massive screen. And yet, Galaxy Fold is not the best of Samsung's newest doohickeys, except the massive interior.
Ultrasonic fingerprint reader integrated in the screen? No it has a side-mounted reader, like a phone from eight years ago. Reverse wireless charging that can boost your Galaxy Buds? No, not at all mentioned. While the S10 has a maximum terabyte of onboard storage, Galaxy Fold is limited to 512 GB, despite a massive 12 GB of RAM. The phone does not even get the Galaxy S10's signature new feature, the "hole punch" for the camera. The built-in screen uses only a massive cut for its dual cameras.
So what does all this mean? This means that Samsung is not worried that Galaxy Fold will be the very last smartphone in every possible action. Because it doesn't have to be. S10 + plus is the phone they market for enthusiasts, to people who want something on par with (or better than) the latest iPhone or Pixel. Galaxy Fold, on the other hand, is a classic aspiration product: the one you want on everyone's heart, even if no one can afford it. Or justify it.
Keep this in mind when it comes to cars. If you are a car buff, you know about Ford GT, Dodge Viper, Nissan "Skyline" GT-R. It's the cars you rush over, maybe even take a test drive from the dealer's borrower if you feel daring. But even if you could scrape together the monthly payments, you know you would regret it the first time you actually tried to put a whole lot of groceries in your luggage or the third time you filled up the tank in a week. 19659004] If you want something fun but at least a little bit sensible, you buy Mustang, Challenger or (think tank) Maxima then. Supercar is the one in the dealer window that gets you in the building. But that is not what you will actually buy.
So it's with Galaxy Fold. This will be Samsung's 2019 main unit, the one you see in several commercials around September and October to get you thinking about how innovative and futuristic the brand is. And it will work: You won't see anything like that for a while. But with a price tag roughly twice as much as a standard advanced phone, a thickness that will barely fall into your pocket and the dubious user suspension of a small Android-powered tablet, Samsung knows you won't buy a
Galaxy Fold is for bragging rights
With the smartphone market dropping and profits down as users either beam to high prices or simply keep their older phones longer, there are only two companies that can make phones as outrageous and advanced as the folding right now. Apple didn't, because that's not how Apple works. Apple, for all its boast of innovation and genius, is conservative: it has a mild, stable hardware development. And Samsung did Fold – because that's not how Apple works.
Samsung, with its market-leading volume position and its relative security, can afford to do the Fold, even though it is known will not be the money that S10 will make. And that's the only player in the Android game that can. OnePlus can't blow hundreds of millions of dollars into research and development for a new form factor. Neither can Samsung's rival LG countries, nor even the rapidly rising Chinese brands Huawei and Xiaomi gain huge profits in a growing market. Google would surely afford it, but as Apple is, they are relatively conservative when it comes to clean hardware.
Samsung is not conservative. As yesterday's presentation pointed out, they are investing heavily on big phones with the original Galaxy Note, and started a trend that even Apple followed for too long. They have now driven standard features such as AMOLED displays, wireless charges and water resistant bodies long before it was clear that there would be a demand for them. Samsung takes the risk. And even if it doesn't always shoot out – how long did it take the company to finally admit that premium Android tablets wouldn't come back to life? That means they deserve the credit.
So keep in mind that Fold will flop and that Samsung is aware that this is a strong opportunity. Say Fold does not sell a tenth of the units that this year's Galaxy S and Not models do. It is okay. Although Fold is a critical and commercial failure, it is worth the money to maintain Samsung's position as a provider of daring design (at least according to its competitors' standards). Having the dazzling shot of the phone evolving in a seasonal host of NFL commercials will be worth every penny spent on marketing the product.
This will go in two ways
But let's assume for a while that Galaxy Fold succeeds If it does, a remarkable context of circumstances must occur.
First, the Samsung nails the hardware. For a forage product in a completely new form factor, this seems unlikely. For all of Samsung's boast of "ten years of Galaxy S" in the presentation, the first two generations of the Galaxy S phones were at best forgivable, and simply horrible at worst.
Remember Google's first forays in Android phones, Microsoft's original surface, or even the first gene iPhone with its 2G connection? Big changes mean great risks and usually big mistakes. With the large polymer-based display and incredibly shaped AMOLED screens, I doubt that Samsung also does these things at any time approaching its normal volume note that it releases six weeks after the Galaxy S10 trio.
If Samsung can pull a rabbit out of a hat there, they must also nail the software. It seems a bit more likely, as they have the help of Google working with the latest versions of Android to handle multiple screens and folding screens elegantly. The demonstrations were really impressive, with apps seamlessly changing between two screens and working in a multi-wall interface. But don't forget that they also need developers, both large apps like Facebook and Spotify and the smaller, more personal applications that users trust.
And finally, Samsung would need consumers to get excited in a big, big way. With a starting price of $ 1980, even more so for the promised 5G version, Samsung's marketing department would need a miracle that hosted an Old Testament prophet to get buyers to get around the Galaxy Fold block.
There was nothing in yesterday's demo that showed why a very large but a little clunky screen, which is connected to a much smaller and less appealing one that you would use a lot of time, would be worth two or three times the price of the phones we already comfortable with. Hello, Samsung: My phone already plays Netflix and works with Google Maps, and with three apps at once instead of "just" two are not worth a prepayment on a car.
Also in the Unpacked presentation, the company Galaxy Fold placed as a "luxury" device without a doubt. And it can win some fans: Who can afford it will surely want it just for the "wow" factor that made phones like the original Motorola RAZR stand out. With its gratuitous specs and unique design, it certainly has a better assertion about true luxury status than the stylish monstrosities knocked out by Vertu and Goldvish. But can you see the average buyer who has four phones to buy at a family plan shelling out for a single? Not a chance.
But again, let's assume that all of these unlikely stars match, and Samsung can't make Galaxy Folds fast enough to set consumer demand. If it actually happens, Samsung will know that it has a winner, and spend money making the weight technique cheaper and attainable. Within two to three years, you'll see folding Galaxy-tagged phones available in easier-to-swallow price points, and your competitors will shrink to reverse this hinge and polymer screen for even cheaper designs.
It would be nice. I think I would love a world where phones that host a sci-fi stall were common. But like Dick Tracy's radio watch and the transparent computer screens in every single science fiction movie, reality seems far less practical than more conventional designs. The much more likely scenario is that Samsung sells a few thousand of these phones, to people with enough curiosity and disposable income to control them, and then weighs us with any other eye-catching feature in a year or two.  To "Samsung" logo on the hinge is the Galaxy Fold's most important feature. "width =" 1911 "height =" 1082 "data-credittext =" Samsung "src =" / pagespeed_static / 1.JiBnMqyl6S.gif "onload =" pagespeed.lazyLoadImages.loadIfVisibleAndMaybeBeacon (this); "onerror =" this.onerror = null; pagespeed.lazyLoadImages.loadIfVisibleAndMaybeBeacon (this); "/>
And that's okay if Galaxy Fold gets into the bin phone story next to patterns like Nokia N-Gage or Kyocera Echo, it will still serve its purpose in the moment: to make Samsung look cool, and whatever the Galaxy Fold status symbol, dream of dream, business operation – it is certainly cool. a smartphone market where phones are becoming inseparable in a sea of glass plates, the fact that Galaxy Fold has a Samsung logo on it will make it worth every penny spent to do it right.