- 01-16-2013, 02:04 PM #1
Samsung faces Windows dilemma
Overseas carriers shun Windows lineup
By Cho Mu-hyun
Samsung Electronics is facing a bumpy road in a move to reduce its reliance on Google’s Android platform as overseas carriers are shunning promoting the firm’s Windows lineup, according to industry observers.
Samsung Electronics’ Ativ S
The technology giant is currently the flagship vendor of the Android platform, giving it huge leverage in talks with carriers over rollout dates or promotions, a power that only Apple enjoys as well.
It recently announced that its Galaxy S line of smartphones that run on Google’s operating system have sold 100 million since their launch in 2010.
Industry analysts said that carriers, such as Spain's Telefonica and U.S.'s Verizon, are intentionally less enthusiastic about carrying Samsung’s Windows-running Ativ series, even though Windows 8 is a highly competitive platform. It is to prevent the Korean company from gaining too much leverage power by controlling two platforms.
“Mobile operators don’t feel inclined to promote Samsung’s Windows phones and obviously want a diversification of phone vendors,” said HMC Securities analyst Kim Sang-pyo over the phone. “The amount of subsidies offered and product promotions by carriers are lower for Samsung’s Windows lineup compared to Android phones.”
The analyst said that carriers will in the end concede to pressure from Samsung Electronics, as the firm will not sit back and see any of its marketing budget, estimated at 7 trillion won last year, wasted.
“Samsung obviously wants to lessen its dependence on Google’s Android and is considering Windows 8 as one way to maintain its growth amid the saturation of the Android platform in the market,” Kim said. “Windows 8 phones have a great outlook as enterprise phones and can become a good revenue line for Samsung.”
Kiwoom Securities analyst Lee Jae-yoon said the Korean technology firm must react well to the market situation and said it will change by next year, with Windows 8 seen as a third player along with Android and Apple’s iOS.
“After amending some problems such as slow booting time and optimization to run Microsoft Office throughout this year, Windows 8 will sustain its growth and by next year will have a larger share of the market, especially in tablets,” Lee said.
By next year, mobile operators will have to sell Windows 8 phones following market demand with the vendor likely being Samsung. Carriers will have to go along with this, he said.
Analysts generally agree that the tablet lineup featuring Windows 8 is its strong point. “In the domestic market, Samsung’s Windows tablet has sold over 80,000 since launching last year, more than the sales of Google’s Nexus 7,” said Lee. “After Microsoft addresses some of the touch-intensive platform’s shortcomings, it has the potential to become the leader in tablets.”
The world’s largest electronics maker by revenue is likely to pressure partners more into promoting its Windows product line as time goes on.
“People don’t buy Samsung phones because they run on Android but because it is a Samsung phone,” said an industry official requesting anonymity. “Its strong brand image over rivals will guarantee better sales of Windows 8 devices if Samsung sells them.”
Microsoft’s next-generation operating system seems caught up in a tug-of-war between carriers and Samsung gaining more saying-power, the official said.
Nokia recently released its preliminary financial information that indicates its outlook is brightening, which industry analysts estimate to be due to the rising popularity of its low-end Windows phones.
“Nokia’s returning to the black indicates that Windows phones are competitive products that can stand out in the market place,” said Microsoft spokeswoman Lee Sung-yeon. “More and more developers are producing content for our platform and our outlook is positive.”
- 01-17-2013, 08:27 AM #8
- 01-17-2013, 10:52 AM #9
This topic came up last summer. With a comment from Samsung officials. It might not be reaching as you think.
Samsung “partnering with Microsoft to cut its dependency on Google Android” | WMPoweruser
Any proof as to your understanding about carriers? Or just your opinion? This article doesn't agree.
- 01-17-2013, 11:25 AM #10
The second link is better, names people, etc. but sounds like a very soft cover-the-bases approach to keeping anyone with deep pockets happy. Ill believe it more when samsung states they are tired of selling millions of sgs3's, and just want to sell a few hundred thou a quarter instead, and actually stop producing it.
Yes, its my opinion carriers could care less about who is the oem, and who writes the code that runs on it. If verizon could get a few hundred million from RIM today to say nice things, you should believe RIM would be the golden child tomorrow. Substitute rim with whoever you like.
Its also proven through recent history that carriers will push whatever is the easiest, most recognized product that will get people to sign a contract WITH AN EXPENSIVE DATA PLAN.
- 01-17-2013, 12:21 PM #13
the key is leverage though, if u sell 1 million gs3 and have to subsidize 20% of the cost (i mean carriers) u can reduce that amount to may be 10~15% if you have leverage using other platform/brands (in another sense, threat...)
when you are really high up in the food chain you can't just look at what you make now, but what you can do in a couple years and what tools or means you have under your belt when the time comes, and leverage is what is often the most useful tool to get more profit through tug of war with the OEMs
- 01-18-2013, 07:49 PM #18
Samsung's main dilemma, in my humble unimportant opinion, is the desire to diversify from Android is a lot like trying to find a new flavor of Ice Cream if you are a Ice Cream manufacturer. Vanilla is simply put the best selling flavor out there bar none. (Get it?? "BAR" none???) Chocolate is next, but Vanilla outsells it 2 to 1. Put some effort into Strawberry, Mint Chocolate Chip, and a few other flavors but still Vanilla rules. All the effort you are putting into promoting and producing other flavors is important- you know it is- but vanilla is the only one turning the kind of profit you want.
Sure you have the money to put into another product, and you know you should. But so long as your Vanilla, which is a good product, versatile, and what you do best, is still paying the bills and keeping the stock holders happy it is not as easy or as common sense as one would think.
Samsung may regret being so dependent on the little green robot at some point, but those profits and the way they are burying the competition right now makes it tougher then one would think to shift gears.
To put it another way, someone once asked Stephen King why he wrote such macabre stories. His answer was simple: "What makes you think I have a choice? Writing is a catch as catch can profession. You stay with what is successful." Mr King has tried to write other things, but his horror/suspense stories pays the bills.
- 01-18-2013, 08:20 PM #19
If I'm an ice cream purveyor, I'm going to put out other flavors, because vanilla may lose its appeal one day. Strawberry may become the flavor of choice, and when vanilla falls out of favor; I want to be there offering an alternative.
- 01-18-2013, 08:31 PM #20
01-21-2013, 05:21 AM #21
- 797 Posts
Samsung has the means to make some real got hot Windows Phone 8 devices.
I think the problem comes from the antiquated idea that you make a phone specifically for one OS.
Just allow the user to select the OS at setup, Windows Phone 8 or Android. Then the other OS install files get deleted.
With 16Gb or more a non issue.
The other design mistake is to actually print the front menu etc. buttons. They should use a longer display and simply display them.
They are touch most of the time anyways.
As to physical buttons, that is the biggest joke I know on mobile phones. Yes they work, but what a complicated thing to do when you have capacitive touch in the glass.
01-22-2013, 03:55 PM #24
- 18 Posts
Definitely interested to see how that turns out. If I recall Microsoft tried breaking into the market prior to wp8 getting a big push and they didn't get much of a nod from anyone. I was glad to see them partner with nokia. HTC....not as much. Samsung makes a great product, but I really like the idea of Nokia and Microsoft hanging out a bit longer before they open it up to EVERYONE. *and I plead...please do not do this! there are a thousand crappy androids because of this!*
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