Wednesday, March 20, 2013

A Clone by Any other Name will not smell as Sweet

The Yankee Group is a research outfit that tries to project where things are going in the tech world.   They seem to be unimpressed with the launch of the new Samsung IV phone/phablet.    In a release yesterday, covered in Appleinsider, they suggest that the new phone will actually lose ground to the iPhone.  They think the new phone will not gain ground in the US market.

As I suggested in an earlier post, the rollout of the as yet unreleased (with no date yet posted) phone was evocative of an Apple event - although many observers said it was one click off.   I think that may be true of the Galaxy IV too.   There is one other risk for Samsung at this point, with an announcement and no release date, they may depress sales of the Galaxy III.   Timing on announcements of new products can influence the sales channels for the earlier models.

On Sunday, my son bought his son (10) a new cellular phone.   After, I commented to my grandson, that I had not had a cellular phone when I was 10, it seemed like a natural thing to do.    This is perhaps the best way to get in touch with kids as they are walking home from school.   My son chose a lower end phone - but not surprisingly AT&T offers a phone with unlimited texting for the pre-teen set.

Fully functioning Smart Phones have the disadvantage of a pricing scheme which is probably out of reach for many consumers.   An iPhone would have been very expensive for the use that my grandson was going to put it to.  So neither the Galaxy nor the iPhone are likely candidates for that market.

While we were waiting to complete the transaction I noticed one of the sales associates was checking her phone - which was a Galaxy III.   I asked her about the phone and its size and she said she liked it a lot.  I picked one up and still found it to be very bulky.

When iPods were first becoming must have devices Microsoft developed an MP3 player which tried to mirror the Apple product.   It was called the Zune.   It was pretty well designed but lacked the entire environment that Apple had created for their product.   It sold poorly although surprisingly it is still an also ran in the competition for MP3 players.

A lot of a smart phone purchase involves a series of choices - size, operating system, options, APPs and even color go into making a decision on which phone to choose.  But from my perspective, and seemingly from the Yankee Group's more sophisticated market view, the attempt by Samsung to copy Apple, will fall flat.

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