Samsung Exec Lays Out 2015 Plans
Samsung will produce up to 30 percent fewer smartphone models in 2015, a top executive said at the Korean device maker’s Investor’s Forum 2014 in New York.
“In 2015, we will lower the number of smartphone models by one fourth to one third compared to this year,” said Robert Yi, Samsung Electronics senior vice president and investor relations head, at the conference, as recounted by ZDNet.
Yi suggested that Samsung needed to shore up its price competitive profile at the low end of the market while pushing innovation at the high end.
“[Lowering the model number] will allow us a chance to lower the prices of [remaining models] through mass production,” said Yi. “In low- to mid-end products, price is the most important, and for high-end products, it is innovation.”
Samsung is facing increasing price pressure from upstart rivals in mature and emerging markets, particularly in China, where Xiaomi has overtaken the Korean manufacturer for the top spot. According to researcher Kantar Worldpanel Comtech, Xiaomi is the leading smartphone maker in China with a 30.3 percent share of the market, followed by Samsung with an 18.4 percent stake.
Samsung recently released its Galaxy A series smartphone in China to make up some of that lost ground.
The vendor also said it will move into volume production by late 2015 on a flexible smartphone display that can fold in half, according to Lee Chang-hoon, Samsung Display Business Strategy vice president.
“We will secure production capacity of 30,000 to 40,000 [flexible displays each month] by the end of next year,” said Lee. “We plan to provide consumers with a product that has a flexible display by the end of the year. However, nothing has been decided on the finished product.”
Whatever Samsung decides for its first flexible display smartphone likely will be at the high end of the market.
“For high-priced smartphones, innovative factors such as flexible display will be important,” Yi said.