Samsung’s explosive Galaxy Note 7 crisis signals problems at Korea Inc.

“Before a world audience watching online, Samsung on Monday offered details and schematics showing how its Galaxy Note 7 smartphone went from cutting-edge technology to a costly, combustible failure,” Choe Sang-Hun and Paul Mozur report for The New York Times. “But for many of the company’s critics, the most interesting part of the presentation was what Samsung did not say: How could such a technologically advanced titan — a symbol of South Korea’s considerable industrial might — allow the problems to happen to begin with?”

“The answer to that question gets to deep shortfalls that former employees, suppliers and others who watch the company say may have contributed to the incident. Samsung, like South Korea as a whole, fosters a top-down, hidebound culture that stifles innovation and buries festering problems, they say,” Sang-Hun and Mozur report. “For those critics, these problems have come to light through another front: politics. Samsung has been caught up in a scandal surrounding the country’s president, which they say illustrates a hierarchical culture that tends to micromanage away creativity and insulate family-run business empires from accountability and competition.”

“So large and influential is Samsung that some worried South Koreans call their own country the ‘Republic of Samsung,'” Sang-Hun and Mozur report. “With the Note 7, Samsung pushed its business model, as well as its technology, to the limit, according to Samsung officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity while the Note 7 investigation was being completed. Driven by the desire to prove it was more than a fast follower of Apple, Samsung rushed the Note 7 to market ahead of Apple’s iPhone 7… Samsung’s insistence on speed and internal pressures to outdo rivals in part signal a breakdown in the ability to truly innovate and push out new ideas, critics say. In place of big new ideas, Samsung focused on maxing out the capability of components like the battery. That philosophy, which worked to keep Samsung on the heels of the likes of Apple, simply is not as effective as Samsung tries to push ahead.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote last week: “Since the criminal enterprise Samsung owns the country, it’s wholly unsurprising that a Seoul court denied the arrest request. Samsungorea is a den of thieves.”

Samsung heir Lee Jae-yong escapes arrest in massive bribery scandal – January 20, 2017
South Korea attempting to handicap Apple by demanding the removal of preinstalled apps like the App Store – July 7, 2016
Korea Fair Trade Commission clears Samsung’s use of standard-essential patents against Apple – February 27, 2014
South Korea, the Republic of Samsung – December 10, 2012
Welcome to South Korea, the ‘Republic of Forgery’ – September 11, 2012
Samsung’s ‘Instinct’ is obviously to make Apple iPhone knockoffs – April 1, 2008

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


  1. US trooos and military personnel out of South Korea (Republic Of Korea: ROK) now !

    Why the heck are we supporting criminals who rip off US intellectual property and steal away business that rightly belongs to US companies?

      1. The south would invade the north?!! Seriously?!! OK, that’s a new one. I’ll give you marks for creative thinking.

        But it seems rather unlikely because, while the south would undoubtedly triumph in the end, there’s a high probability that Seoul would be decimated by artillary fire from the north until it was eventually taken out. Doesn’t sound like the kind of victory that would be worth the trouble. And, horror or horrors, a Samsung factory might get hit.

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