I didn't trust yesterday's report that Samsung sold over 1 million Galaxy Fold smartphones worth $ 2,000. It was impossible to accept the large number – $ 2 billion in revenue from a foldable device that was known to suffer from delays in post-announcement redesign – or the implicit suggestions that Samsung confidently made one million of them, or in some way one Millions of people were convinced to buy devices at this price even after multiple pre-orders.
It took Samsung almost a day to counter the allegation, but overnight Yonhap from South Korea (via the Korea Herald) reported that the company now denies "media reports" from the number. Incidentally, these “media reports” were based on a quote from Samsung Corporate President and Chief Strategy Officer Young Son, who said publicly:
And I think it's about [a] that we sell millions of these products. There are a million people who want to use this product for $ 2,000.
The math never worked for me, also because I remembered that Samsung had previously estimated that it would only sell 500,000 Galaxy Folds this year ̵
In other words, 2019 won It's not the first year that one company – or all companies together – has sold one million foldable phones. It took most of this year for fully functional physical versions of such devices to be seen at trade shows and / or in stores. But I will be very surprised if at least one of these million sales milestones is not reached in 2020.
Before the almost simultaneous announcements of Mate X and Galaxy Fold this year, the idea of a folding phone seemed to be exciting and exciting. It wasn't so much that people weren't ready for the concept, but rather that there were basic questions about hardware, software, use cases, and pricing rumors that weren't answered yet. If one of these companies or a competitor like Apple showed up on the first day with the right product at the right price, a foldable telephone market would have developed almost overnight, similar to the original iPad.
That did not happen, and instead several companies last year have phones with different shapes, number of screens and whether or not annoyed they fold on the X or Y axis. It is becoming increasingly clear that there will indeed be conventional smartphones that fold like wallets – see: Motorola & # 39; s Folding Razr – as well as Galaxy Fold and Mate X tablets that fold into smartphone-like form factors to let. Other companies, including Xiaomi with the Mi Mix Alpha concept phone, are investigating the still questionable value of surround screens that can be folded around the device without a hinged hinge. I will put this "Don't Fold" category aside.
In contrast to Galaxy Fold and Mate X, in which a user with overlapping Venn diagram circles "wants a new tablet", "wants a new smartphone" and "wants" needs to pay $ 2,000, "said the new Razr from Motorola , which is aimed only at users who want a new phone with a large screen and a smaller footprint and who are willing to pay $ 1,500 for it. My personal impression is that the value of the Razr is wiped out by using an old Snapdragon 710 processor with 4G technology and not by supporting 5G mobile phones. anyway.
Samsung's next offering has a better chance of asserting itself than the original Galaxy Fold. At a developer conference in late October, the company teased a Razr-like folding smartphone with no name and no details, and then confusingly released another and optimized Galaxy Fold tablet under the name W20 5G. The foldable in the Razr style from Samsung is to be officially presented today in early 2020. Rumor has it that this device will be called the Galaxy Fold 2, although it is fundamentally different in most respects from its predecessor – by no means from a tablet, and it is unlikely to have a huge second screen outside.
Assuming it affected the durability of the folding screen – a point that should not yet be taken for granted – I think that a device with the large screen is easier to plug in. Screen size and performance of a flagship phone could Determine price. No price of $ 2,000 or more, and as I said a while ago, probably not $ 1,500 either. It could work in the below $ 1,300 range in the stratosphere dominated by today's top iPhones.
With the right price and features, Samsung could easily sell over a million of these folding devices. We'll have to wait and see if Samsung hits the right numbers this time, but I hope that's the case. Foldable devices were found to have a place in the market in 2019, but it may take longer than 2020 to determine if this is a tiny niche of the estimated 1.4 billion phones sold per year.