Samsung may have just gotten itself into a mess that will take years for it to get out of.
The gravity of the entire Galaxy Note 7 saga has transcended beyond just the phone alone, and Samsung as a brand is suffering the fallout from all those explosions.
And that’s just the start.
Bye Samsung, Hello…
While experts say that Samsung’s decline in the financial world is only temporary, and expect them to make a full recovery soon enough, consumer confidence on the hand is not as easily earned back.
World leading e-commerce platform Branding Brand recently conducted a survey to see how much of an impact the entire Note 7 issue have on consumers, and here’s what they found out:
In summary, 40% of Samsung users don’t see themselves using the same brand in the future in light of the recent happenings. With this group of people, 30% are going to the iPhone, 62% to other Android phone manufacturers, while a modest 8% expressed an interest in Google’s latest Pixel.
Apple aside, that huge swing in percentage away from Samsung may just give a competitor an edge to come out tops.
Here’re 5 manufacturers who I think could be just that.
In the battle of the South Korean giants, one can never talk about Samsung without the mention of LG somewhere in the background.
In recent years, LG has largely benefited from their partnership with Google to produce Nexus devices, and along the way, raised their brand profile among the Android faithful.
The G5 brought with it modularity, and the v10, dual cameras AND dual screens.
Now, LG has the V20 incoming in the phablet arena. With the Note 7’s demise, the V20 offers a solid all-round package that anyone would want in a phone, and who know? It might just be the one flying the Korean flag in the world of smartphones soon.
Realistically speaking, Huawei may just be the only one that is able to overtake Samsung.
According to information from the International Data Corporation (IDC), Huawei currently ranks third in smartphone shipments – just behind Samsung and Apple.
As Chinese phone manufacturers are rapidly ridding themselves of the negative stereotypes usually associated with them, Huawei is leading the change. It couldn’t hurt too that their image has been uplifted through sponsorship deals with major football clubs such as Arsenal, AC Milan, and Borussia Dortmund.
With solid offerings in recent months like the P9 Plus, a collaborative effort with renowned camera brand Leica, and also their own Mate and Honor line of phones which have received a lot of positive reviews, they have a catalogue of smartphones that slots into a variety of budgets, much like what Samsung has right now.
Speaking of Chinese manufacturers whom have had a positive image thanks to football, there’s also Oppo.
With their long standing deal with FC Barcelona, their phones have been endorsed by the likes of Neymar Jr and Leo Messi.
That’s not to say that the success of their products is purely due to marketing, because they actually make good phones. If you recall, the Find 7 which they released 2 years back was actually the first phone with a Quad HD display, making Oppo somewhat an innovator too.
Just behind Huawei at 4th in the IDC rankings, their phones have been well received by both the international community and in their home market in China. They’ve also taken to a fight with Huawei, sitting at the top in July.
HTC is a bit of a long shot.
They fell into a bit of a slump in recent times, stagnating while producing flagships smartphones that were not up to par as the other competitors.
This year, it looks like all those bad decisions are seemingly over. With their trademark aluminum unibody and boomsound speakers, HTC started the year on a high with the release of their HTC 10 smartphone, to a huge sigh of relief from the tech community.
For a while in April this year, the HTC 10 even tied for first place in DXOMark, with the Samsung Galaxy S7 for camera performance.
For a brand who used to be mentioned in the same breath as Samsung at the height of Android, HTC is slowly making its way back to the top of the rankings.
Well, it also helps that they are currently in cahoots with Google for arguably the best Android smartphone on the market to be released.
Little known fact: the “Phone by Google” is actually made by HTC.
Okay, that’s not really fresh news if you’ve been following the leaks, but this latest collaboration may just be something mutually beneficial for both tech giants.
Manufacturers who have worked with Google to make a phone – Samsung, LG, Huawei and even HTC, have had varying levels of success ever since.
But the Pixel was clearly more about Google than HTC. The Pixel serves as an intent that finally, Google is getting serious about hardware, and is taking the fight to Apple head-on.
As the number two most valuable company in the world right now, they certainly have the financial means to make that happen.
The only thing going against Google, and the Pixel, is the limited availability that it has right now, with only a handful of countries getting it, but hey, the very first iPhone too was only available in 7 countries.