No, the smartphone boom has not peaked – Samsung has

“I got back from a weekend away this morning wondering if I’d entered a world where smartphones would soon start to vanish,” Haydn Shaughnessy writes for Forbes. ” We’ve passed peak smartphone, or at least peak expensive smartphone, went the argument in quite a few articles. Samsung and Apple need new strategies! Well, there’s an argument that says this market can run for a long time yet and these two smartphone companies are well ahead of the game.”

“In reality, Apple and Samsung have anticipated the turbulent nature of smartphone markets extremely well. But there’s a difference between the two and it’s wrong to write of their prospects as if they were equals,” Shaughnessy writes. “They have quite different innovation models that set them up for different futures.”

Shaughnessy writes, “Samsung, on the other hand, has peaked in slab smartphones. There’s not much technology left they can throw at the slab to make it better – 3D displays perhaps? There is now a new national priority for Korea, as a whole, articulated by Korea’s chairman of the Knowledge Economy Committee, and quoted by The New Yorker, recently – we have to get good at software. They also need to get good at brokering content… Peak does not apply to Apple. Samsung on the other hand rapidly needs to acquire new competencies or 2013 will be peak smartphone for Korea’s biggest company.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Dominick P.” for the heads up.]

28 Comments

  1. “They have quite different innovation models that set them up for different futures.” What he means here is Apple innovates and it is getting more expensive, lawyer wise, for Samsung to copy Apple.

    1. Samsungs ability to freely copy Apple profitably and shamelessly has peaked along with Samsungs entire portfolio which is headed for the dumpster as Apple eats its liver on the high end and cheap Chinese knock offs eat up its bottom end and finish with some fava beans and a nice chianti.

    1. That doesn’t make any sense, does it?

      What they appear to be talking about is growth, not overall market size. Growth naturally tails off in a product sector after the initial adoption phase. Apple and everyone else will taper off to sustaining levels that comprise product replacement cycles, product upgrades, and new customer acquisition. This should not be a revelation to anyone.

      As long as Apple maintains a solid and profitable marketshare with the iPhone, there is no reason for alarm.

      1. Profitability is the keyword here. As smartphones become commoditized margins will come down. For everyone. The high margins will be in other areas for companies. If they do things right. Apple hopefully will be able to monetize its ecosystem in the future. Apple’s future lies in services, not hardware. And let’s face it, Apple needs to improve its services. They do hardware and software nearly perfectly but services are lacking. The hardware will get the customer into the ecosystem. Then Apple will be able to monetize that. And I’m speaking as a objective long-time user. Someone who has been in the Apple fold for decades. Just not a fanboy. Thus I can use the word objective. But anyone can see that this is the way it is. Even this writer.

      1. Raymond: you meant, the big investors have the power to control AAPL at low prices, then driving the prices up late on when they have bought enough AAPL?.

  2. Here is what I know: There are “cheaper” “smartphones” out there but I’d still pay the same price I paid for my 4s when it comes time to replace it. This tells me that Apple still has legs.
    Next thing: imagine if Apple did as well in the “enterprise” space as they do in the “consumer” space. Consider how much more productive business would do if this was so.
    Last thing: I don’t know about a so-called “iwatch” but if Apple releases a 4k 27″ or 30″ monitor for less than $2k that will work with my 2012 iMac I’ll buy one on day one. Also, ten days after “Mavericks” gets released, I’ll update my iMac.

  3. Samsung is now learning the same lesson HP, Blackberry, Microsoft, and others have learned…great software on the mobile platform does not come easily. OS X has been maturing for over 10 years. Steve Jobs always knew it would eventually be Apple’s trump card on the desktop and in IOS. Game on….

        1. You know that is possible, but the only major player that has ever returned to Apple is Steve Jobs himself. So we’ll see. Scott Forestal is a bona fide genius, but I do agree that he needs to learn some perspective and how to work better with others without being so polarizing. I hope that he’s as capable of dealing with that part of himself as he is at dealing with Apple iOS.

  4. Samsung is at the mercy of Google. The are nothing without Google. They are the finicky Android flavor of the day.
    But now that Google owns Motorola, the game is on.

    1. The reason they are the Android flavor of the day is because HTC which was the previous Android flavor of the day got the bright idea that their customers were end users, and not carriers and they unlocked their phones. Suddenly HTC plunged almost out of existence as carriers dumped them like yesterdays newspaper and replaced them with Samsung. Samsung will go the way of RIM if they lose favor with carriers, which could very, very easily happen as they are selling a commodity, and they have poor customer satisfaction and loyalty stats.

      1. Android and loyalty are mutually exclusive. What I mean by that is Android does not lock you into one device manufacture. I have coworkers who’ve had a Motorola, Samsung, and HTC over a 2 year period. As fast as Samsung has risen is a fast as they can fall. Samsung is trying to change this with their Galaxy store but I’m not sure why the cheap Android Samsung customer will by these apps when they seem to refuse to pay for regular apps.

  5. Of course samedung is peaking.

    If you want a plastic unstable malware ridden cheap non durable ugly phone built with innovation out of apples pocket that won’t last and will catch you on fire, but Samsung , best brand for that.

    If you want a phone that just works, but apple

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