With Android fans still keenly awaiting the next news from Samsung, reports have emerged this week regarding the release date of two significant Samsung handsets. The Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 Edge Plus are both hotly anticipated mobile releases from Samsung, and it now seems that they will emerge on August 21, at least in some locales.
This is significant news, as the purported release date is one month earlier than was generally expected. Certainly the Galaxy Note 4 launched in September during 2014, and it was largely thought that Samsung would release the sequel to this device around the same time in 2015.
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Galaxy Note 5 vs Apple iPhone
However, with Apple likely to release the latest in the iPhone phablet range either late in September or early in October, Samsung has moved the release date of the Galaxy Note 5 forward in order to give itself some leeway before the iPhone 6s Plus is released. The Apple handset is naturally expected to sell like hot cakes when it hits the stores, and Apple itself has already reportedly ordered 90 million units ahead of its unveiling.
Samsung remains a direct rival of Apple, but it must increasingly recognize that the California-based company is well on top in the battle between the two consumer electronic giants. Apple enjoyed a hugely successful 2014, and has firmly establish yourself as the largest consumer electronics company on the planet. A raft of superb achievements were notched by Apple during 2014, and Samsung is definitively playing catch-up at present.
It is certain that the strategists at the Korean company have been playing extremely close attention to what Apple is planning with the next generation iPhone, and have thus moved accordingly with this early Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 Edge Plus release.
The news about the early release dates of these handsets has been leaked by sources close to Samsung in Korea. The publication SamMobile has spoken directly to some of these individuals, and found that Samsung is planning to release two of its most significant products before it was widely anticipated.
Galaxy Note 5 staggered release?
According to SamMobile, Samsung Europe is not currently working on Galaxy Note 5 firmware, which is an intriguing aspect of this proposed release date. This suggests that the early launch of the Galaxy Note 5 could be limited to certain markets, with North America, South Korea, China, Singapore, Hong Kong and other Asian countries likely recipients of the device. It is possible that this will also be extended to some European countries, but that Samsung will limit this to a relatively small number.
It is notable that iPhone releases always target several major European nations, most notably Britain, France and Germany. So it would be an interesting strategy for Samsung to launch the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 Edge Plus, but mainly concentrate on non-European revenue. Eliminating Europe from the launch completely would certainly seem to be a bold approach, but it is one that Samsung will doubtless have considered carefully.
In addition, it has also been suggested that the Galaxy S6 Edge Plus will also launch in the same markets as the Galaxy Note 5. The worldwide availability for both handsets would then be completed at a later date, and the device would ultimately be made available in all countries worldwide by October. This could still see all locations gain access to the important Samsung devices before the iPhone 6s is released, depending on what date Apple sets for its flagship handset.
This remains very much a rumor for the time being, but it is indicative of the strategic battle between Samsung and Apple. Samsung had established itself as the largest seller of mobiles in the latter years of the last decade, but this has now altered significantly. Gartner recently reported that Apple has exceeded Samsung in terms of pure volumes of mobile sales, and this has been achieved by an extremely successful Apple policy in East Asia.
Samsung and China
Apple is shifting large amount of units in China in particular, and this could have strongly incentivized Samsung to concentrate on an East Asian launch for the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 Edge Plus. This has been seen as very much a core marketplace for Samsung, and is of course its native region, and the hierarchy of the Samsung could be viewing these devices as the ideal ones to get the corporation back on track in this marketplace.
This latest report also suggests that the Galaxy Note Edge branding is to be discontinued. This came as a surprise when it was first rumored a few months ago, but increasingly looks to be a likelihood. Samsung is clearly keen to position this phablet as part of the Galaxy S range, perhaps with the intention of designating it a mass-market device.
We will find out more about these devices in the coming weeks, but it seems that the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 Edge Plus may be arriving in the shops significantly sooner than imagined.