They aimed low. They still missed. Mighty Samsung is facing challenges it hasn’t had to face in recent years as the wave of popularity for their smartphone line seems to be waning.
The Galaxy S4 was being heralded as the one that might put Samsung as in a commanding lead against chief rival Apple. Instead, lackluster sales have many investors following the same path that Apple investors started following last year. They’re leaving.
The phone had some pretty innovative technologies added to it as an upgrade over the previous models, but apparently answering calls by waving over the touchscreen and using it as a television remote control weren’t interesting enough to make more users step up from their S3 or S2. It also didn’t help that other Android competitors made strong moves.
“Is Samsung’s smartphone story now over? Not quite yet. It’s growth is indeed slowing due largely to disappointing sales of the S4,” said Jung Sang-jin, a fund manager at Dongbu Asset Management, which owns Samsung shares.
Perhaps that’s true. Perhaps it’s just wishful thinking from a company that has something to lose if Samsung itself loses. According to Reuters:
Samsung Electronics Co Ltd missed already modest expectations for its quarterly earnings guidance on Friday, deepening worries that its smartphone business may have peaked, as growth in sales of its blockbuster Galaxy phones begins to wane and new rivals emerge to eat away at its market share.
Maybe the phone wasn’t good enough. Maybe the brand has been damaged by its battles with Apple. Maybe they rode the bubble a little too long and should have considered a replacement for the Galaxy line rather than another upgrade. Regardless of why this is happening, one thing is certain – they had better come out with a watch of their own before Apple releases the iWatch. That might be just enough for the Cupertino company to regain its dominance in the mobile market.