Samsung swung wildly and whiffed; Now it’s Apple’s turn at bat

“Samsung stumbled last week in a sexist Broadway style product introduction that revealed the mobile king’s limitations,” Jonathan Littman writes for The Huffington Post. “While reviewers listed the gee-whiz features of the latest Galaxy phone, the Associated Press summed up many by concluding, ‘the phone has a grab bag of features that don’t come together as a pleasing whole.’ Slate was more direct: ‘”Samsung Unveils New Phone Packed With Inane Features You’ll Never Use.'”

“How quickly the international technology tides shift,” Littman writes. “Samsung’s long hyped mobile phone juggernaut, driven by solid technology, low prices, Apple mimicry, Google’s generosity, and a bloated advertising campaign suddenly looks vulnerable.

“This was the mega Galaxy introduction that was going to devastate the Apple orchard,” Littman writes. “Instead, Samsung is starting to resemble Microsoft, unable to distinguish between feature creep and genuine innovation. ‘It’s more like Samsung is throwing a bunch of technologies into the phone to see what sticks,’ wrote the Associated Press. Added Slate: ‘a cautionary tale about what happens when you confuse gimmicky with innovation.’ … Last week Samsung whiffed with the whole world watching. Now it’s Apple’s turn at bat. Only a fool would count them out.”

Much more in the full article here.

Related articles:
Gazelle: Galaxy S4 spurs trade-ins of other Samsung phones, not iPhones – March 18, 2013
HTC president calls Samsung’s Galaxy S4 event embarrassing – March 16, 2013
Tim Cook will sleep easy tonight following Samsung’s Galaxy S4 launch – March 14, 2013

59 Comments

            1. Samsung consists of dozens of diverse corporations, some unlisted, and has a complex ownership structure involving cross-shareholdings by group companies. Samsung Electronics Co. is the group’s flagship enterprise.

              Besides the slush fund and art allegations, investigators are looking into long-simmering allegations of murky dealings involving the group’s ownership structure.

              What a most innovative company huh? Fck rediculous.

  1. > Samsung Unveils New Phone Packed With Inane Features You’ll Never Use

    For example, that touching phones thing. That made me laugh every time I see it highlighted in their commercials as a key feature that iPhone doesn’t have. Who want’s to physically touch their phone to someone else’s phone to send them something? There’s a good reason iPhone doesn’t have that feature… it’s stupid.

    > a cautionary tale about what happens when you confuse gimmicky with innovation.

    Gimmickry AND mimicry.

      1. According to the OED, citations for gimmickry (also gimmickery) go back to 1952, and gimmick itself to 1926. Originally used by crooked gamblers and stage magicians, this is a quintessentially American word.

        1. Which means that Americans are essentially crooked gamblers and stage magicians.
          Maybe you computer guys need to think before you post all this opinions on word meanings…..

          1. Yes because an entire society can reasonably be judged by one segment of it. How enlightened of you.

            You might as well judge all of humanity by hitler or all of women by Lorena Bobbitt, or monthers by Andrea Yates.

          1. No he did not, he said the word is American, like American cheese is American. It does not imply that it accuracy describes all Americans or that all Americans eat that nasty cheese.

          2. @Derek @billy
            You’re right, I shouldn’t have worded it that way.

            I think words like “kludge” and “gimmick” are quintessentially American, in the same way as Rube Goldberg devices—exaggerations, but characteristic of a spirited can-do, try-anything, no-holds-barred work ethic, bringing to mind innovators like Edison, Fulton, or Whitney.

          3. YES (billy the fish – sure did)
            line, hook and sinker – he baited himself !

            The American company, Apple – Creators of the iPhone sold the world on this MAGICAL device which made a real difference to so many peoples lives. How CROOKED was that? Sometimes bent things need straightening out – Apple merely corrected the field. GAMBLING on achieving a 1% market share… but disrupting the entire planet.

    1. touching phones is a waste. You have to be standing right next to each other. Big Whoop. Welcome to ‘Sneakernet 2.0″

      The 80s called, and want their physically connected technology back.

    2. Maybe, maybe not – it’s the perception of it that may stick though. I paid at Starbucks with the app’s barcode by holding it up to the scanner. The person behind me asked if this was the phone that had that touching feature and if I used it to pay. I showed it to him and explained what I did and he wasn’t impressed. I don’t think it is a useful feature as email is faster and easier, but some might like it.

    3. hahaha correct.

      Why bump two devices (an app that works horribly on iPhone anyways) when you can just message, email or share via bluetooth or dropbox or whatever – Slamdung is out of touch with todays technology obviously.

      Its a wireless virtual world NOT a colliding smashing physical world of the last ten decades ago.

  2. This is an outstanding assessment and is the definition of the PC world where products have been sold by hanging on features without solid integration. What Apple does is sell integrated systems that start with shipping and packaging.

      1. Good question that can only be answered with a side-by-side comparison (which no one here has done).

        All i’m showing is that some users are going to look at processor speed in their decisionmaking. If this spec was not important, then Apple would not continue to advertise processor speed for its laptops.

        Like it or not, folks, Apple has real competition.

        1. Apple had real competition when they entered the phone market in 1997, and they aimed for 1% of the total market which many wondered back then if they could achieve that. Today their only serious competitor is successful only because they illegally stole and copied Apple’s patented ideas. None of the original competitors are thriving and they will be lucky to continue to exist in a few years.

          1. well, analysts & stockholders are reading the market differently:
            in the last calendar year, AAPL has fallen over 20%.
            BBRY and HP have recovered their losses.
            MSFT has lost only 10% (keep up the great work, monkey boy!)
            GOOG is up 30% !?!?!?!?!!

            I know, few people here believe that stock price accurately reflects anything. Reality is, stock valuation reflects the models of future earnings potential of a company. So Cook is absolutely right to ignore short-term events. But if he doesn’t swing into action when long term trends reveal themselves, then he does to at his own peril (and the peril of stockholders like me).

            …and sure, you can always say in any industry that many laggards fell by the wayside. Problem is, the remaining cell phone competition is only getting stronger — even if they copied, cheated, and stole to get where they are. Bottom line, nobody is willing to place a stock bet that Apple will retain phone profit leadership with:
            1) a single handset model
            2) relatively smaller and slower-expanding worldwide distribution
            3) relatively expensive prices for new phones, or at least relatively poor lifetime value representation by many carriers that actively discount the up-front prices on more frequently updated models from the competitors
            4) relatively passive advertising
            5) surprisingly buggy software releases
            6) an active community of hackers who are providing phone mods — proof positive that many people want features in their iPhones that Apple doesn’t provide (but probably could profit from if the company did get off its ass and deliver certain harmless tweaks that users want).
            7) iPhone 3G was released 156 days after the iPhone 3. Then Apple adopted 2-year tick-tock cycle. That allowed other companies to catch up.
            8) do we need to mention Maps?

            Apple needs to play stronger defense against Samoogle in the marketplace, not just in small claims court. What is Cook waiting for?

    1. @Mike – weren’t you supposed to post this at 8:20?

      Pay attention or you won’t get paid for your “opinions”.

      We’ll see how your employer’s galaxy S4 benchmarks with the expected new iphone.

      1. @ MP : you couldn’t be more wrong in your insinuations.

        I posted a link to another Mac-centric site that showed objective, non-biased data.

        You took this as an opportunity to slander and accuse — no data, no addition to the discussion.

        Who’s the troll?

    2. Do you post as “waterfall” also?

      And what were the so called benchmarks they used?
      Did they just look at RAW CPU and GPU specs? Run some tests that bypassed the OS?

      iOS is elegantly designed and optimized to work with the A* cpus, giving iOS a huge advantage beyond CPU speed.

      Did they test battery life? Did they use same applications running native on ANdroid and iOS?

      numbers on a spec sheet and benchmarks ran outside the OS really say nothing.

      I thought people learned that tech specs and benchmarks are just statistics, that can be presented to be far more than their actual worth. (Damn lies and stats) OTOH, thats the only way Apples’ so called competitors can sell against them.

      Who cares if the Android CPU is 10x faster than Apple’s A6 if the lousy Android OS runs slow, freezes, and needs constant rebooting, and that it battery life sucks?

  3. This is what happens when you don’t have a new iPhone to copy from.
    So, you throw in everything you have but which does not make sense to an average consumer.

    1. It’s also what happens when you release a new phone every 2-3 months, and then run out of things to shove into the plastic case but you still told everyone you were releasing a new, “fantastic” phone.

  4. Why would Samsung want to deliver a knockout blow to Apple? They are nothing without direction from Cupertino. They wait with bated breath for Tim Cook to come out on stage and show them the proper way to design their products. I’m sure the Samesung “smart watch” engineering crew is on standby now because they can’t finish it until Apple shows them what to do.

  5. Dear Samsung,

    why don’t you move your product introduction to one month after Apple’s event. This way your new products could get more innovative features.

  6. All this proves is you really don’t want to be at the top. OR Perceived as at the top.

    Apple does best as the underdog.

    I say go ahead Samsung, stick your neck out, real far. The global lawnmower of opinion will one, see to it you can’t earn too much cash, two never be at the top of the industry, no matter how hard you try.

    This is the global universal socialism that no corporation can stand up against.

    That’s why Apple can’t reach a 1 trillion dollar evaluation. It takes at least two or three companies to get one to that mark, while the trail is from 600 billion to 500 billion. And the stock market hits 20,000+

    This is not seated in fact, but just an observation. Even when Microsoft hit it’s peak, what happened? Lawnmower happened.

  7. Plump, no finesse, true innovation will come ONLY out of USA (or Europe for that matter) Ever been in Korea? Nothing wrong with their work ethics, we can learn from that for sure, but moving the goalposts? Don’t think so…

    1. Actually Korean work ethics are a bit busted. Koreans tend to be very linear in their thinking. They think generally inside the box. If something they are doing isn’t working they will just do the same thing harder and longer and expect to get better results. Koreans work harder not smarter. This tends to lead to very inefficient work.

      Korean Confucian culture which helped in the past has become a hindrance to Korean development and as time goes on this grows worse. For example lower level (younger) designers/ workers have no incentive to want to innovate. If they do develop something successful they seniors, elders and/or bosses will take the credit for the development as well as any financial reward. If they develop something that is a failure they will get blamed, chastised, scolded etc. So they just play it safe and try not to do anything to stand out. Just stay with pack.

      You often hear about Koreans working super long hours. They do this to try to show their commitment to their company to get raises and promotions but in reality they are not doing anything most of the time. They are just at their desks trying to look busy. (Quantity and Speed is valued in Korea over quality) Often times after work workers are basically required to go out drinking with their bosses. If they decline then that hurts their chances at getting favorable reviews and raises from their bosses.

      The GS4 event is what you get when things are done Korean style. A lot of visual showy things on the outside but when you down to the inside isn’t a lot there. Also notice that there almost no Samsung employees to show off the product just paid actors and celebrities. These things may work in Korea but fail miserably outside Korea. Even Microsoft uses their own employees to demonstrate their products.

  8. Samsung is merely being what they were before iPhone, which is adding more and more features and upgrade the software. That is actually what everyone else was doing before iPhone, and they called it innovation. Until iPhone, the REAL innovation came that is.
    So don’t be surprised.
    Some tech media and Fandroids has been preaching for Samsung for so long they themselves really believes what they said and REALLY LOOKING UP TO SAMSUNG as innovative leader. For them, I have three words: Welcome to earth.

    1. Interesting points. “Innovation” has different levels, maybe?

      Small innovations, like changing the placement of icons or the function of hardware switches to improve usability, pleasing the consumer

      Mid-level innovation, going to extremes with technical specs, delighting spec junkies

      High innovation, changing the way something is done, and delighting competitors who have something new to copy

  9. “Now it’s Apple’s turn at bat. Only a fool would count them out.”

    Gosh that’s a heck of a lot of people, no wonder Apple’s death knell has been sounding for so long.

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