Earlier in the week Apple announced their Quarter One results for the January – March Sales period, showing an unprecedented buck in trend with their second-best quarter in Apple history. They shipped 61.2 million iPhones worldwide last quarter, different to their usual peak right before Christmas, and taper off into the new year, trend. This initially put them ahead of Samsung for the first time in a long time until today when Samsung released their results.
In Quarter One, 2015, Samsung report that they sold 99 million smart phones, last quarter, eclipsing Apple by at least 30 million units. Despite this the Korean company still slipped 12 percent, compared to the same time last year. They found the sunny side to this, however, saying in their earnings report that there was “profit growth due to increase sales of middle-to-low-end smartphones.” Despite this, Samsung thinks its IT & Mobile Divisions earnings will grow, expecting an increase in global sales of the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge Smartphones. They aim to strengthen their leadership and, in turn, drive sales growth, by actively responding to the growing middle-to-low-end market through a more consistent lineup.
This could all change, however, as Android Lollipop 5.1’s update is getting near release, almost exclusively on HTC and Samsung and Microsoft prepare to launch Windows 10 and a more developer-friendly app development toolkit. This will allow more Android and iOS apps to be converted to the Windows platform, possibly encouraging another shift in preferred phones again as the Windows phone market begins to see more conversion to its devices. Windows currently holds 7.6 percent of the marketshare from Q1 2015.
Samsung’s earnings could change through their own doing also, as they announce that they have expanded the access to their Tizen Store. Tizen is the tech giant’s own OS, currently featured on phone models available in India and Bangladesh and now 182 countries worldwide, such as U.S., U.K., China and Australia. This move could have the same motivation behind it as that of Microsoft, to encourage more developers to use their platform for apps, not just Android or iOS.
Tizen was initially created to be the South Korean company’s answer to Android and iOS, a new player in the market, per se. However, due to a string of delays, it became the company’s alternative system, another option, not a direct competitor. Saying this, Tizen was released on the Samsung Z1 for under $100, off-contract, making it an ideal low-end phone. Tizen is also making it’s way to Samsung’s TVs, becoming the operating system on all 2015 smart televisions produced by the company. With this move and the Tizen store available worldwide, they are positioning themselves in the marketplace to become more popular to users and host more popular apps.
The combination of the Tizen powered Z1 and Android 5.1 powered Galaxy S6 could be all that is needed to get Samsung’s results back on top. Android 5.1 brings users – that are fortunate enough to be included the update – bug fixes from 5.0.1 and 5.0.2, which were rushed releases on to the Galaxy series. Android 5.1 also brings enhanced features, including changes to quick settings and tweaks to the system.
Some new features include “screen pinning”, where you can pin your current screen so that it always stays in view until you turn it off and updates to the “non priority” and “all notification modes” where you can go completely silent (think, no vibration. Ever), “priority” where you can mark certain notifications to break through the silent barrier, and “all”, which says it all. Probably a very popular change is their new device protection. iPhone has it, Windows has it, and now Android has it.
Device protection has always been available, usually it has always been up to the individual manufacturer or an app on the Google Play store. Now built into Android 5.1, device protection allows your device to remain constantly protected if it is lost or stolen. Activated with a password or pin on your device it will remain locked until you sign in with your Google account, even if the device is erased in factory settings. With the new OS, handsets and updates available for the South Korean company, the next quarter is sure to be turned around.
By: Kiara Hartley
Photo by: Flickr