Almost two years ago, I wrote almost a programmatic text about who needs smartphones with a folding screen. Today it is already obvious that they are well received (as far as possible for such expensive and niche devices) by buyers and the market. The point is that every second person will buy them until they go (it will take more than one year, although thanks to the Internet and globalization, the pace of technology development is constantly accelerating and everything is happening faster and faster each time). But sales of the same Galaxy Fold show interest from buyers. Most importantly, they get the user experience they expect, and that’s the most important thing so far.
A bit of background
The interest in the Galaxy Z Fold2 is even higher, which is easy to explain – the differences from the first model are significant, noticeable and interesting. In addition, due to the delay in the release of the first Fold (Samsung, as is customary in the company, deliberately delayed the release of this smartphone to the market in order to remove all the obstacles inevitably associated with the launch of the new technology – and, as Forbes authors like to write, “ made the right decision ”) the difference between the appearance of Fold and Fold2 was only six months, not a year. Any technological novelty that can radically change the balance of power in the market, as a rule, has only one chance. In case of failure, consumers perceive any new technology as having appeared “too early”, there are many such examples in history. For example, the first tablet was not iPad at all, Microsoft presented not only its vision of the product, but even released a special version of Windows XP Tablet Edition for it in 2002 (8 years earlier than Apple, which released the iPad only in 2010)! And it ran a ton of products, including, for example, the Compaq TC1000 released in 2003, which was my first laptop. The Apple Newton pocket computer, first released in 1993, can also be called revolutionary, but ahead of its time – it was with it that the era of PDA began, but it began, in an amicable way, not with him, but ten years later, when the first Palm PDAs appeared … Not superfluous, in talking about the extreme importance of the direction of folding smartphones for Samsung, there will be a mention of a special concierge service (like the owners of Vertu), Z Premier Service, which is available 24 hours a day for buyers of Z-series smartphones and allows you to get repairs once a year after purchase devices for a non-warranty case (including a broken screen, for example).
Samsung, as a global market leader, which, despite unprecedented pressure from Chinese manufacturers, not only retains its market share, but manages to increase it, albeit only slightly (it is always difficult for a leader to grow at all), it is extremely important in the current situation to get (and lead) a new direction for the development of smartphones … And not to repeat the mistake of the previous market leader – Nokia, which failed to bring to mind its new Maemo operating system, which would allow it to maintain its leadership in a world where iOS and Android already exist. Only the role of Nokia’s proprietary operating system in the case of Samsung is played by the technology of folding screens, bringing new technological capabilities, new user experience and allowing to increase sales from top to bottom – gradually expanding the range of smartphones and moving from flagships to the middle segment and beyond.
Customer portraits (in large strokes)
Now that you understand the strategic opportunities and context of the situation, you can move on to understanding who might be interested in a smartphone like the Galaxy Z Fold2. To begin with, I will record two simple and obvious circumstances that play a key role: now this is the most expensive mass-produced smartphone on the market, and it has a simple, understandable and visually fixed difference – a foldable screen. This explosive mixture allows you to attract the attention of just the audience that the manufacturer needs in this situation.
First (the first thing that comes to mind) is technology pioneers – people who are interested in any technological innovations. Each of us (perhaps you yourself) has a friend who changes phones 2-3 times a year. Ever wonder why he does this? The question is not that a person is “mad with fat”, but that there are a lot of technological innovations around us today. Own internal itching encourages a person to try one or the other. As a rule, it takes a few weeks or months to understand everything for themselves and find out everything that they are interested in learning about the product. Further, the first impressions weaken, fade, and that very itching arouses interest in another device, since there are a lot of them. If you like, this customer profile can be thought of as a geeky version of Casanova.
Secondly, it can be users who understand (and fits well into their consumption profile) the idea of the product that Samsung broadcasts, and which easily explains the primary use cases: smartphone and tablet in one device… We are increasingly giving preference to a smartphone over a computer for solving simple everyday tasks: to find something quickly in Google – a price or reference information. Send a message. Make a money transfer or payment. There are many scenarios, and every year there are more and more. At the same time, the tablet remains an intermediate link between the smartphone and the computer. It has more mobility than a computer and a larger screen (correspondingly, more useful information or details) than a smartphone. I would say that a tablet is such a more convenient version of a home computer for non-high-priority tasks that are more related to leisure than work: to play, watch a movie or turn on cartoons for a child, even read the news (watch the latest videos on YouTube or Facebook). Those who use smartphones and tablets on a daily basis suddenly find that they can be replaced with one device. This is reason enough to give the Z Fold2 a try.
Thirdly, these are people who may have little interest in technology, but who like to surround themselves with expensive things and do not deny yourself anything… The smartphone has long become the most useful and necessary accessory and our second self. These people are accustomed, relatively speaking, every year to buy themselves a new iPhone in the maximum configuration (by the way, the fact that the maximum version always sells well suggests that there are a lot of such people – these are politicians, businessmen, and their environment – all typed a lot). And here – something even more expensive (and that’s why it has magnetism for such buyers) than the most expensive iPhone. Difficult to pass by (at least for such people). Add to them those who, for various reasons, simply do not like or do not fit the iPhone, but are not ready to trust their money to Chinese manufacturers. For such people, there are few alternatives at all – one of Samsung’s flagship smartphones, so why not this one? After all, when you are surrounded by some iPhone owners, it is nice to stand out among them, feeling a certain superiority.
In practice, I believe, one of these factors is triggered (or several at once, which gives more possible combinations – people are all different), but, first of all, I see businessmen and top managers among the Galaxy Z Fold2 buyers. Most likely connected either with IT (fortunately, the industry in our country is huge and people there, to put it mildly, do not live in poverty), or with retail sales of electronics. These are unlikely to be glamorous Instagram divas (the charming Z Flip is more suitable for them) or religious users of Apple technology.
Three things to know about Samsung Galaxy Z Fold shoppers
- These are people who are actively interested in new technologies and are accustomed to form an opinion on their own, and not rely on someone else’s, albeit credible.
- They are used to using both smartphones and tablets every day. They understand the benefits for themselves each, and accept a device that combines both scenarios.
- A special round-the-clock Z Premier Service concierge service is available for them.