Apple, Samsung Maintain Control of Tablet Market In 2014

Apple and Samsung managed to maintain control over the branded tablet market in 2014, although Apple carried the market as expected, according to new data from ABI Research. Apple’s iPad experienced a decline of 15 percent in shipments between 2013 and 2014 but gained 9 percent market volume quarter-over-quarter. In contrast, Samsung managed 7 percent unit growth due to the success of the company’s new flagship Galaxy Tab S slates and Tab 4 series. ABI Research forecasts a CAGR in shipments of 10 percent from 2015 to 2020 in conjunction with a CAGR of 3 percent in revenue. Apple, Samsung and Lenovo have become the big three for branded tablets, controlling 72 percent of the market during 2014, making them key leaders entering 2015. 




Singtel Partners Ericsson and Samsung to Boost LTE Speeds Beyond 300Mbps

Singapore’s Singtel says that it will soon deliver speeds beyond 300Mbps for its customers. It will use Ericsson’s LTE A technology to deploy a tri band Carrier Aggregation service to boost mobile speeds.

Tri-band Carrier Aggregation (also called three-carrier LTE-Advanced) is a step up from the current dual-carrier LTE networks used by Singtel. The technology combines bandwidth from three of Singtel’s spectrum bands to deliver higher performance mobile data services.

The tri-band Carrier Aggregation service will be progressively deployed in Singapore over the next two years with trials beginning in Q2 2015. Samsung will be providing devices supporting tri-band Carrier Aggregation for the trial.

Mr Yuen Kuan Moon, Singtel’s CEO of Consumer Singapore says:

“With smartphone penetration rates of over 85 percent in Singapore, data download speed is very important to our customers. This is why we continue to invest in improving our technology to ensure we deliver the fastest and most consistent experience to our customers.”

Galaxy S6

Samsung Unveils Galaxy S6 Smartphone at MWC

Samsung Electronics presented at Mobile World Congress its latest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S6. The premium unibody design sports a metal frame and Corning’s Gorilla Glass 4, with a 5.1-inch Super Amoled display. While the display is the same size as its predecessor, the S5, the resolution is 1.8 times higher at 1440 x 2560 pixels. 

As expected, the S6 runs Samsung’s own Exynos 7 64-bit processor, which combines a low-power 1.5 GHz quad core with a faster 2.1 GHz quad-core processor. The Android 5.0 phone comes with 3 GB RAM and will be available in a choice of 32, 64 or 128 GB internal storage. A microSD slot is not included. It also features an upgraded version of Samsung’s TouchWiz user interface.

The Galaxy S6’s back camera offers 16 megapixels and the addition of optical image stabilisation, and it also has a 5 megapixel front camera. In addition, the S6 comes with an improved fingerprint scanner, LTE CAt.6 at up to 300Mbps, 2,600 mAh non-removable battery, WPC and PMA wireless charging, and support for Samsung’s new mobile payments service, launching in the US later this year. 

The phone will launch 10 April in a choice of white, black, gold and blue models. Carriers including Vodafone, Telefonica, Orange, Deutsche Telekom and EE confirmed they will offer the new phone. The alternative Galaxy S6 Edge will also be available in green. This version of the S6 features a display that curves along both edges of the phone. Its specifications are otherwise the same as the standard S6. 

Samsung also introduced at MWC a new version of its virtual reality headset for use with the S6 and S6 Edge. The new version of the Gear VR Innovator Edtion, developed with Oculus, features a smaller size and improved graphics and processing power. 

Samsung to Unveil ‘Galaxy S6 Edge,’ Suggest Leaked Images

Images allegedly of two Galaxy S6 phones show one with the traditional front-facing display and a second with a curved edge. Samsung may indeed outfit one model of its upcoming Galaxy S6 phone with a display that wraps slightly over one side, assuming images leaked on a developers forum are the real deal.

Images posted Thursday on the xda-developers forum claim to display two Galaxy S6 phones side by side. One image shows the backs of the two phones, which doesn’t tell us much since the devices look similar from that view. But the second image clearly reveals one phone with at least one side of the screen curving over the edge, adopting a feature found on Samsung’s Galaxy Note Edge.

Samsung’s current Galaxy S5 has faced criticism for being too similar in design to the S4. Hit by competition from Chinese vendors with low-cost phones and on the high end from Apple with its big-screened iPhone 6 lineup, Samsung has watched its sales and market share tumble. The company needs a sure-fire hit with the Galaxy S6 and a killer feature that can lure smartphone consumers.

A tweaked dispaly could be a killer feature. However, the edge on the so-called “Galaxy S6 Edge” shown in the leaked image appears smaller than the one on the Note Edge. The side on the Note Edge can display icons, notifications and other items separate from content seen on the main screen. But the side seen in the image appears to simply stretch the front screen a little bit around the edge, suggesting that it may only serve to provide a bit more real estate to show your main content.

As always, images leaked online should be taken with a grain of salt. But a promo shot posted by T-Mobile earlier this week showed a Samsung phone with a curved display and the tagline “Six Appeal,” almost certainly touting the Galaxy S6. Whether the edge on the purported Galaxy S6 Edge will simply be an extension of the front screen or will act independently (or both) is an open question, but not for long. Samsung is expected to unveil its new Galaxy S6 on Sunday at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.



Samsung Launches Smart School in Senegal

Senegal’s Ministry of Education partners with Samsung to launch innovative mobile education solution

The Senegal Ministry of Education and Samsung Electronics Africa today announced the launch of a mobile education solution aimed at creating positive change and providing an advanced and interactive classroom experience for learners.

Installed at the Plan Jaxaay Secondary School, the Samsung Smart School initiative is an integrated platform that includes a monitoring and controlling feature – which allows teachers to keep track of educational content on their learners’ screens – a screen-sharing feature and a real-time question-and-answer feature.

“The future of education is about accessing information and collaborating locally and globally. Teaching and learning has become social; this has become possible with the emergence of initiatives such as the Samsung Smart School.”

Says Samba Guisse, IT Advisor, Human Resources Department  at the Ministry of National Education in Senegal.

Samsung’s Corporate Citizenship arm has always supported the development of education with the view of impacting society and the economy. Samsung believes that access to technology can create new learning possibilities for students, paving their way towards lifelong learning and personal development in order to acquire the knowledge and skills needed in today’s society.


Launched in the country in partnership with Millennium Connect Africa, Samsung’s Smart Schools are part of the company’s far-reaching African citizenship programme, designed to positively impact the lives of Africans.

Smart Schools have also been installed in countries like Mali, South Africa, Kenya, Rwanda, DR Congo and Sudan.

Samsung Galaxy A7

Samsung Launches Galaxy A7 Smartphone in India

Samsung has launched its Galaxy A7 smartphone jn India, at INR 30,499. The smartphone is available online at the company’s official e-store. The A7 comes with two quad-core processors, 16 GB internal memory (expandable to 64 GB with a microSD card), 2 GB RAM, 5.5-inch display, a 2,600 mAh battery and Android 4.4. The smartphones also features a 13MP rear camera with LED flash and a 5MP front-facing camera for selfies.

Smartphone Shipments in 2014

Smartphone Shipments in 2014 Total 1.167B with Samsung and Apple Leading

Global smartphone shipments in 2014 totaled 1.167 billion units, a year on year increase of 25.9%, with combined shipments of Chinese brands reaching 453.4 million units. Chinese vendors thus managed to encompass almost 40% of the global shipments and represent six of the top ten smartphone brands worldwide.

“2014 was definitely an impressive year for Chinese brands as they gained more share of the global market,” said Avril Wu, global smartphone analyst of TrendForce. Even so, Wu noted that the pooled shipments of numerous Chinese brands were still less than the combined shipments of the 2014 brand leader, Samsung, and the second best, Apple. Their shipments together accounted for 518 million units. “This shows that the fierce competition among the brands relatively and severely narrowed their profit margins,”

Said Wu.

Samsung and Apple retained their first and second spot in worldwide smartphone shipments

2014 was a difficult year for Samsung as its market share dropped to 28% compared with 32.5% of the previous year. Nonetheless, Samsung retained its number one position. According to Wu, Samsung’s large-size, high-end Galaxy Note series faced stiff challenges from iPhone 6 Plus, while its midlevel and low-end smartphone shipments were undercut by inexpensive Chinese brands. As a result, Samsung’s overall shipment target had undergone downward revisions since the beginning of 2014, with annual growth in shipments only at 8.4% (around 326.4 million units).

In 2014, Apple maintained its high annual growth rate of 24.5%, which translates to 191.3 million units shipped worldwide for the entire year. With 16.4% market share, Apple was a solid number two in the worldwide smartphone rankings. Apple’s position was attributed to the success of its first large-size smartphone model, the iPhone 6 Plus. This new category addressed Apple’s lack of smartphones with above 5″ screens and thus significantly raised the fourth quarter shipping ratio.

As for LG, its strategy of “promoting high quality products at low prices” paid off with strong market reception to its flagship smartphone models, ranging from G2/G2 Pro to the newest G3. “Right now G3 is the first smartphone outfitted with a 2K screen that gives users better viewing experience,” said Wu, “and this showed LG’s advantage of having a display panel manufacturer as under its wings.” For that reason, LG was the dark horse of 2014 with its ranking jumped up to number four and annual shipment growth at 75.4% (70 million units shipped).

Chinese brands represent six of the global top ten due to their high C/P products and rising domestic demands in China

Lenovo officially completed its acquisition of Motorola from Google in the fourth quarter of 2014. The acquisition and reorganization process took almost a year since Lenovo’s announcement. With the merger finalized, Lenovo’s total shipments in 2014 exceeded 90 million units and its annual growth surpassed 100%. It ranked first place among Chinese smartphone vendors and third worldwide with its 7.9% global market share.

With the introduction of the Honor 6 model in 2014, Huawei wholly changed its strategy of using smartphone chips from Qualcomm and MediaTek for its high-end products. Honor 6 is packed with Kirin 920, a 4G chipset developed by Huawei’s subsidiary HiSilicon. “HiSilicon’s product roadmap shows that in the future it will pursue R&D in midlevel and lower-end products,” said Alan Chen, Chinese smartphone analyst of TrendForce, “and Huawei also determines to eventually become self-reliant in chipset supply.” With approximately 70 million units shipped and an annual growth around 70%, Huawei was ranked number five in the 2014 worldwide smartphone shipments. The company benefitted from its unproblematic overseas expansion, its rapid growth within China, and its good working relations with telecom operators.

As for the smartphone makers with the best cost-performance products, the title goes to Xiaomi. Its flagship models cost around US$300 to US$350, but they match their high-end counterparts from international vendors in hardware specs. Since its rise in China during the latter half of 2011, Xiaomi has been able to more than double its growth each year. Its 2014 annual shipment growth exceeded 200% with 60 million units shipped, and at one point managed to edge out the leading vendors in China such as Samsung, Huawei, and Lenovo. Xiaomi ranked six worldwide in 2014.

Chen further stated that MediaTek’s success with complete reference design for 3G chips allowed the company to take over China’s smartphone market in the last few years, creating difficulties for the top manufacturer Qualcomm. With Chinese telecom operators actively promoting 4G smartphones in 2014, however, Qualcomm came back strongly based on its adoption and enhancement of MediaTek’s model. Qualcomm’s 4G solution for smartphone OEMs, which is better priced and more in tune with Chinese clients, threatened MediaTek’s standing in China. According to TrendForce, 4G smartphone’s penetration rate in China was around 20% in 2014 and estimated to exceed 40% in 2015.

Fawad Khan

Fawad Khan Becomes the Brand Ambassador of Samsung

Fawad and Farhad to enter into a journey with Samsung, while the Josh Band continues

Samsung began its year with an auspicious event held at Pearl Continental, Lahore. In this mega event,Fawad Khan and Farhad Humayun were signed as the future Brand Ambassadors for Samsung’s mobiles under the Galaxy flagship. Fawad’s tremendous popularity as a vocalist, actor and model in Pakistan is well-known and now he has gained international recognition too, as he appeared recently in a Bollywood movie that was a box office hit and made him stand among the top notch stars of Bollywood. Whereas, Farhad Humayun is a famous model and lead vocalists and drummer of the Band “Overload”.

Both these stars have now tied bonds with Samsung – the globally leading innovator in the field of electronics and IT, to represent its powerful smartphones. This accord between them is going to prove prolific for the careers of the new Brand Ambassadors.

Samsung has also announced that they would continue to work with the “Josh” band, which has already been working as Samsung’s Brand Ambassador, greatly enriching numerous campaigns and events.

“Samsung has had successful journeys with all its brand ambassadors and now the addition of Fawad Khan and Farhad Humayun in the Samsung Family, as the new Brand Ambassadors is also a very promising initiative for the company and the celebs. We will continue working with the Josh Band as well, as our experience with them has also been amazing and I am sure, it will continue to be so.”

Fareed ullah Jan, the Head of Samsung’s Hand-Held Products (HHP) division


Armentel Offers Samsung Handset Promo

Mobile operator Armentel, working under the Beeline Armenia brand, has introduced a promotion of the Samsung GT-E1202 handset to its subscribers. The device is offered with unlimited on-net calls for two months. The price of the package is AMD 9,900.

SK, Samsung Partner on 5G Development

SK Telecom and Samsung Electronics announced partnership on 5G network technology and service development. The MOU will see the two Korean companies cooperate on sharing their 5G vision with standardization groups and technology forums in and out of the country, define and select frequency bands suitable for implementation of 5G technology, conduct R&D and experiment on enabling technologies including the next-generation small cell, massive MIMO and next-generation modulation/demodulation, and develop large-volume and high-quality services based on 5G and the IoT. 

Through the joint research with Samsung Electronics, SK Telecom said it plans to define and develop detailed key performance indicators for the next-generation network so as to lead 5G technological evolution. Building on the expected gigabit speeds of 5G, SK plans to develop new services such as augmented/virtual reality, mobile tele-presence and holograms. In addition, the company plans to develop advanced-IoT technology to enable hyper-connected services that connect all objects and humans for interaction without limitation of time and place. SK earlier announced similar development partnerships on 5G with Ericsson and Nokia.

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