Change from Note to Fold still can not become, Samsung to revive the Chinese market has to step over three hurdles

Chad SEP 02,2021

This year, Samsung's high-end product line has made an adjustment, I believe that friends who are still concerned about Samsung have found: Galaxy Note series seems to have been cut, replaced by Z Fold and Z Flip two folding phones. Of course, if you want to say instead, the former is more closely related to the attributes of the two are inclined to business positioning, the original Note series S Pen stylus was also inherited by the Z Fold.

But rather than a high-end track conversion, it is more like a release in the Chinese market. Obviously, the Note series failed to open up the high-end market in China, and the higher-priced Z Fold series also does not have the potential to make a splash in the Chinese market. Samsung's products are indeed commendable in some directions, but they lack too many elements to succeed in the highly competitive Chinese market.

To summarize, Samsung needs to overcome three hurdles if it wants to make a mark in the Chinese market.

From the first sales to no one asked after a 400% jump can not solve the "three feet of ice"

When it comes to Samsung, in the minds of many young friends, perhaps with a high-end international brand such a label. In fact, it is no wonder that Samsung cell phones often appear in the public eye with ultra-high-end positioning, advanced black technology, not expensive attributes, such as the folding screen phone just released today. What many friends may not know is that in 2012, Samsung's cell phone market share in China has been ranked first.

The visually stunning color screen phone Samsung T108 in 2002

In 2002, Samsung cell phones officially entered the Chinese market. At that time, the Chinese cell phone market was still the world of Motorola and Nokia, and the market share of the two brands combined was more than half of the total share. Samsung's cell phone, backed by its strong technology research and development and production capacity, won consumers' love by virtue of its fashionable appearance, precise process quality and high quality screen. It is reported that in 2002, only the third quarter of Samsung sold 1.29 million units of cell phones, which also includes about 70% of the water goods.

At that time, Samsung cell phones to the author's deepest impression is the resistance to build. 2010 around, a friend of the author was a big fan of Samsung cell phones, then showed us the Samsung cell phone's ability to resist falling: towards the ground to fall hard, the phone bounced up again after landing, pick up as usual.

In 2013, Samsung's market share rose to 18.7%, a position that no one could shake.

But 2013 is also the inflection point of Samsung cell phones in the Chinese market, since then it has been a stumbling block, in 2014 by Xiaomi overtake, in 2015 fell directly out of the top five, in 2018 the share is only 0.8%.

I believe that careful friends have found that, yes, Samsung's share of the decline in time, it is the time of the gradual rise of domestic cell phones. 2013, the cell phone market rookie Xiaomi opened up a new path by virtue of high cost performance, Huawei's cell phone business is gradually getting rid of the dependence on operators custom, vivo, OPPO's offline channel advantage is gradually taking shape. But this seems a bit difficult to understand: in the Chinese market has deep roots of Samsung, why can not beat these "upstarts"?

To answer this question, the decline of Motorola Nokia, Samsung to replace the process actually has some reference value. Simply put, in the case of objective consumer demand, the trend of products and brands can be created. Motorola Nokia did not seize the tide of change in smart phones, and was replaced by Samsung who seized the trend as it should be. Similarly, in the era of deepening consumer demand, it is only logical that Samsung, which did not seize the opportunity to make in-depth changes, was replaced.

In fact, Samsung's sales in China later "exploded" again, with Samsung's smartphone shipments in China reaching more than 1 million units in the first quarter of 2020 and its market share returning to more than 1%, rising to 3.2% in the first half of 2020, a 400% jump compared to 0.8% in 2019. But the good times don't last long, and Samsung's cell phone share in China's 5G market is less than 1% again in the third quarter of 2020.

And such a case, in fact, is the result of the trend of attachment. 2019 China entered the first year of 5G, and the early layout in 5G Samsung preempted the launch of 5G models, which allows Samsung to take advantage of the new communication era. But only these are obviously not enough, after the gradual popularization of 5G cell phones Samsung then lost the advantage again.

Now, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 was launched to replace the Note series of products, seemingly to seize the folding screen product trend, but the probability is still not to seize the trend of the Chinese market. The latter is the crux of Samsung cell phones in the Chinese market is difficult to continue.

Domestic brands to kill the Red Sea, in front of the Samsung cell phone has three big hurdles

Just "catch the trend" to comment on the success or failure of Samsung in the Chinese market is a bit general, in more detail, with reference to today's successful cell phone brands, Samsung cell phones are actually three "big hurdles" did not cross, the combination of these factors led to the Samsung The combination of these factors led to the failure of Samsung cell phones in the Chinese market.

1, localization strategy is relatively backward, not really meet the needs of Chinese consumers

Samsung's sales in the Chinese market is low, but in the international market has always been ranked first. This seems a little difficult to understand, why in the international market, Samsung called the wind and rain, to the Chinese market does not work?

In fact, Samsung's cell phone strategy is not unworkable, the outstanding sales in 2013 and before has proved the correctness of Samsung cell phone strategy. But with the entry of domestic brands, Samsung cell phones gradually decline, which will answer points to one thing: domestic brands know more about what Chinese consumers want, they give users from Samsung cell phones can not get the sense of satisfaction. Regarding the product, for Samsung, the crux is the localization of the phone's functions.

For example, Samsung's cell phone operating system to many users have left the impression of lag, some such as double-opening applications, fast payment, multi-function NFC and other national favorite features Samsung is also in recent years to have a more complete adaptation. In hardware, Samsung's Android emperor status almost no one can shake, but many consumers have feedback that Samsung's phones are not as smooth as domestic flagships.


In fact, Samsung is also focusing on localization in many aspects, such as game adaptation and localized application services, but the problem is that Samsung still lacks sufficient sensitivity to the needs of Chinese consumers. The current One UI, if you put down the previous impression of Samsung mustard, you will find that it is already a very complete system. But at this time, the Chinese system has already crossed the stage of functional completeness and started to advance in the direction of more conceptualization, such as HarmonyOS, which connects everything, OriginOS, which changes the current visual system, and so on.

Multi-screen collaboration

In addition, Samsung, which has the advantage of user volume and multi-category product line, did not seize the advantage of building connected ecology, but was later taken over by the national brands. Multi-screen synergy and other scenario-based ecological deployment Huawei has made a model, Xiaomi's IoT system is also taking shape, and even the new brand realme is accelerating the pace of follow-up.

Of course, product features are only one aspect, brand localization is a systematic long-term project, such as the price system, marketing methods and so on, these strategies need to be adjusted according to the changes in the local market with foresight. And once in the Chinese market has been a great success of Samsung cell phones, it is difficult to jump from the inherent thinking, which led to a more rigid competition model of Samsung cell phones.

2, the high end is too high, the middle and low end pull down, the product line layout imbalance

Whether it is the Z Fold and Z Flip folding screen phone just released today, or the Galaxy S series at the beginning of the year, there is an obvious label, that is, "high above". High-end positioning, high-end technology, and of course, the high price. The first two high is a good thing, representing the ability of the brand and product, but the high price inevitably makes Samsung cell phones some "high in the cold".

Although the launch of the S series also has a more affordable version, but these affordable versions often have obvious material and configuration of the neutered, its decline in product power is difficult to compete with domestic flagship products at the same price.

Samsung Galaxy A9s

In addition to high-end models, Samsung's low-end and mid-range phones have little presence. In fact, Samsung cell phones have also been concerned about this problem, launched specifically for the Chinese market Galaxy A series, such as Samsung's first rear quad-camera phone Galaxy A9s, customized for Chinese consumers Galaxy A6s, but the problem is that Samsung did not seize the essence of the Chinese market mid-range machine cost-effective, in the market is not much sound, now this series only left The only thing left in this series is the A52, which is struggling to keep up appearances.

In layman's terms, Samsung can't afford to be a giant in the industry and fight with domestic manufacturers. But in the fiercely competitive Chinese market, not going out means losing the chance of success.

3, the marketing system has not kept pace with the times, channel construction to break through

Speaking of Samsung, many friends will feel that this is a relatively ancient brand, the reason is also very simple, in the case of insufficient product density, and the lack of adequate marketing and promotional tools, resulting in insufficient brand exposure.

On the contrary, the domestic brands, the stars signed endorsements, all kinds of programs and activities sponsored implantation aside, whether it is the subway station airport roadside, or web APP client, as long as you can put the billboard place, can see the domestic cell phone brand or product figure. Simply put, consumers can always see the brand and products, leaving the impression of "this brand is very mainstream".

In addition, in order to strengthen the communication and interaction with users and listen to their feedback and opinions, domestic brands not only focus on user forums and other news aggregation channels, but also often hold a variety of online and offline activities. Through these activities, manufacturers not only get valuable advice from users, but also deepen the adhesion of the brand to the audience fans.

At the same time, the lack of construction of offline channels also makes it difficult for consumers to experience quality Samsung cell phone products, but in fact it depends on the brand's popularity and product sales. The current OPPO, Vivo stores are everywhere, Huawei, Xiaomi, Glory is also often seen, these stores not only play a role in offline sales, but also provide consumers with access to the product location and opportunities.

For Samsung, sales and channels have formed a vicious cycle of the situation, how to break through worth thinking about.

Written at the end

The release of Samsung Galaxy Z Fold and Z Flip can hardly save its share of the Chinese market, not even with the novelty of folding screens, and the high price tag seems to have more of a meaning of breaking the pot in the Chinese market. Of course, we are not saying that Samsung Galaxy Z Fold and Z Flip products are not good, they do have a leading position in form and concept, but Samsung cell phones in the Chinese market has been deep in the accumulated problems, want to redeem the frenzy can not be achieved by one or two outstanding products.

However, this does not mean that Samsung cell phones in the Chinese market does not have a chance to turn around. Samsung has enough technical research and development strength, strong financial support, exclusive parts supply, full product line distribution, which is unmatched by any domestic manufacturers. For Samsung cell phones, the successful experience of domestic manufacturers is worth learning from, so that the brand and product thinking with the times is the way to win.