22nd February 2024 4:32 pm
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Samsung bets on Foldables as mobile business suffers

  • Samsung reports a 95 percent drop in profits in Q2 2023 compared to Q2 2022.
  • This dip appears to have been driven largely by fewer sales of the Samsung Galaxy S23 series.
  • Thankfully the brand’s A-series smartphones continue to have traction in the market, but it does face constant pressure from Chinese manufacturers.

Since LG exited the global smartphone race and Huawei’s lack of Google Mobile Services effectively put the Chinese behemoth out of the race, Samsung has been left to do its own thing in the Android space.

The brand does now face more well entrenched competition in the form of OPPO, Honor, Xiaomi, and vivo among others, but frankly speaking, the market isn’t in the best condition.

Unfortunately the global smartphone market has seen a bit of a downturn of late. As CounterPoint Research reports, the global smartphone market declined 14 percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2023.

This downturn affected Samsung last quarter and it seems to have persisted into the second quarter. Revenue across the board is down 6 percent compared to the first quarter and this drop is largely due to a decline in smartphone shipments. Looking at results year-on-year, Samsung’s profits are down 95 percent, the same drop it reported in Q1.

While the Galaxy S23 was well received, it seems hype for that device waned quickly and Samsung saw fewer sales.

Samsung says, “the Galaxy S23 series was able to achieve higher results than its predecessor in the first half, in terms of both volume and value”. That interest didn’t extend into the second quarter though and both high interest rates and inflation kept folks from buying new Samsung handsets.

Despite this, Samsung is hopeful that the second half of the year will return to normal, even if – by its own admission – forecasts for market growth have been lowered by pundits.

This isn’t great news for a brand that just launched two foldable smartphones aimed at a younger market. Whether this gamble will pay off remains to be seen but if the last six months are anything to go on, Samsung is in for a hard quarter.

Aside from the Galaxy Z Flip5 and Galaxy Z Fold5, Samsung is also hoping its new Watch6 and Tab S9 series perform well this quarter while working with regional partners to boost sales of the Galaxy A Series and Galaxy S23.

While Samsung is top of the pops in smartphone shipments, it’s the brands A-series that drives many of those shipments. Of course it’s premium smartphones do sell but with Xiaomi, OPPO, vivo and other brands starting to catch up, we have to wonder whether the era of the premium smartphone is on its way out.

We will have to see how things play out for the rest of the year but we very much doubt that a folding smartphone with an exorbitant price tag will be the saving grace Samsung needs right now.

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz

Beats include cybersecurity, business, infrastructure, telecommunications, PC gaming and internet culture.

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