5 killer Galaxy Note 5 features you won’t find in any iPhone

15 Aug 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Samsung counts on wraparound screen, payment system in new Apple challenge.

The South Korean company was lining up the two new super-sized Galaxy troops on the same day as a US appeals court ruled it will not reconsider an earlier decision finding that Samsung violated Apple patents. “You can put the phone near any magnetic strip reader and use the finger print sensor. Every year since the inception of Samsung’s highly successful Galaxy Note series, the Korean company has introduced the latest model during the IFA exhibition in Berlin at the start of September. They tokenized the credit cards just the same way as Apple pay does,” explained Lance Ulanoff editor of Mashable IDC figures also showed Samsung remained the leader in the worldwide smartphone market but was the only company among the top five to see its shipment volume decline year over year. Samsung is to get the jump on Apple before the expected release next month of successors to the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, which have won over premium users. The 5.7 inch (14.5cm) screens and addition of payments are meant to help Samsung stand out from the array of inexpensive devices by Chinese vendors using the same Android software.

The company says it’s a matter of “consumer needs and the specific market situation.” To best serve European needs, Samsung is promoting the Galaxy S6 Edge+ ahead of the Note: a device that has the same basic hardware as the Note, but misses out on the stylus and related functionality. A botched strategy saw Samsung misread demand for the S6 models released in April, failing to produce enough three-sided screens for the Edge while the regular version struggled against the bigger iPhones.

That Samsung has expanded its jumbo phone lineup beyond the Galaxy Note is no surprise; not everyone wants or needs a stylus, or the expense that comes with it. Both phones feature a 5.7-inch display, but the S6 has smaller overall dimensions and a curved “dual edge” screen, which sets aside a part of the display for other content. In short, Samsung is saying that European customers appreciate big screens just like everyone else, but probably don’t make use of the stylus as much as their Asian or American counterparts. Samsung’s global smartphone market share fell more than 3 percentage points in the second quarter amid a surge in sales for iPhones and devices from Huawei Technologies Co (華為), Lenovo Group Ltd (聯想) and Xiaomi Corp (小米).

What’s surprising, though, and encouraging for an industry that’s spent the last several years marching steadily toward commoditization, is that the enormous phone Samsung decided to make wasn’t the perfectly serviceable but largely unremarkable Galaxy S6. As someone who’s used each of the four Note generations so far, and often forgotten the stylus even existed, I’m inclined to agree with that assessment. Samsung had 21.7 percent of the market and Apple 14.1 percent, according to researcher International Data Corp. “But we’re very confident when we look at the behavior of consumers around the world that there is still a lot of demand for innovation and new technology,” he said. The situation could still change, depending on how much of an outcry the Note’s European absence engenders (one retailer has started a petition to encourage Samsung to change its mind), but for now at least, Europeans are going to have to look elsewhere to satisfy any cravings for a stylus.

The digital wallet is seen as helping Samsung compete against Google Inc and eBay Inc’s PayPal for a slice of the US mobile-payments market, which Forrester Research estimates could be worth US$142 billion by 2019. Unlike Apple Pay, Samsung’s can work with the magnetic-strip card readers that are common in stores and restaurants. “They should have a larger contingent of financial institutions in a shorter period of time,” Crone Consulting LLC chief executive officer of mobile-payment researcher Richard Crone said. Samsung said it is teaming up with American Express Co, Visa Inc and MasterCard Inc, as well as Bank of America Corp, JPMorgan Chase & Co, Citigroup Inc and US Bancorp, among others, for the service. “It’s not about being first in the market, but creating compelling technology,” Samsung Electronics executive vice president Injong Rhee said at an event in New York where Samsung unveiled the new service and phones. Apparently not even Samsung had much faith that the S6 Edge would amount to much beyond a niche product; according to IDC research manager Ramon Llamos, the company manufactured five times as many standard S6 units as it did Edge iterations.

Turns out, people loved it. “The reception toward the Edge was much more than anticipated,” says Llamos, “and ever since then Samsung has been trying to trying to play catch-up.” That Samsung took a gamble on an oddball phone with a premium price is remarkable. And that tells us differentiation is possible, that smartphone sameness doesn’t have to be the norm, and variety doesn’t have to come from lame software gimmicks or unsettling brand tie-ins.

I think the jury’s out among manufacturers saying, ‘What’s the value in this, or is it just some sort of tech gimmick?’” What those manufacturers are missing also is what’s most encouraging the Edge’s success. Each detail was examined and reexamined,” marketing VP Alanna Cotton said when introducing the device on Thursday. “The metal bezel is even more subtle and refined.” Any software or internal hardware features were buried under a mountain of messaging: This phone’s a looker. They’ll join popular phones like the Samsung S6, Moto X, and LG G4, all of which are so similar in appearance—and enough like the iPhones—that you’d be hard-pressed to discern any difference from halfway across a subway car.

More recent breakout stylistic efforts, like the Marshall-branded audiophile phone, seem more like attempts to service a niche that likely doesn’t exist. Had the Edge flopped, it may well have been the last significant attempt at trying something new; who other than Samsung has the budget and persistence to try so (relatively) ambitious a departure?

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