It’s back to Samsung vs Apple in premium phone segment: Korean giant eyes leadership with Galaxy S22 series – The Financial Express

The Financial Express

It’s back to Samsung versus Apple in the domestic premium smartphone market, with the former launching its flagship Galaxy S22 series recently.
The battle has a long history. While Apple was always seen as a more premium, up-market and aspirational brand in the segment, Samsung was the undisputed numero uno in the segment. For instance, Samsung used to be the market leader in the premium smartphone segment – Rs 45,000 and above – till 2019, with Apple occasionally scoring during the last three months of a year.
However, the market changed from the beginning of 2020 when Apple came out with models like iPhone 11, 12 and 13, and toppled Samsung from the leadership position. In 2021, for instance, Apple sold about 5.4 million devices in the domestic market in the premium segment against Samsung’s 1.1 million.
One reason for Samsung’s loss is attributed to its phasing out the hugely successful Note series, without coming out with an equivalent alternative.
It’s this very market which Samsung is now confident of reclaiming. The company claims to have received a very good response for the Galaxy S22 series with 150,000 pre-bookings. This is quite reminiscent of the times when there used to be long queues outside Apple stores whenever a new iPhone brand was launched.
“You will see very soon our position strengthening in the premium segment, where we have huge aspirations. In the mid segment (Rs 20,000-45,000), we are already the largest player and we want to consolidate that, but the kind of reception we have got for S22, which retails from Rs 70,000 upwards, and goes till Rs 120,000 is phenomenal. We want to be number 1 in H1 this year,” Raju Pullan, senior vice-president, mobile business, Samsung India, told FE.
“Almost 150,000 consumers pre-booked even before the product was launched. The strategy of synergizing the S series and the Note series into S22 has got the fancy of consumers and that is the testimony of our flagship strategy,” Pullan said.
Samsung, which commands an around 25% market share in the mid segment, wants to take it to around 40% by the end of this year, on the back of new launches. The company on Tuesday launched 5 devices in Galaxy A series, of which 3 are 5G models.
“We are the leaders in the 5G segment and also in the mid-segment. We have the largest 5G portfolio in the country with 16 products in the price range of Rs 20,000 to Rs 150,000. There is a plethora of models which will help us consolidate our leadership position, especially in the mid-range,” Pullan said.
(With inputs from Indronil Roychowdhury)
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