21 October 2016
Samsung's flagship Galaxy Edge 6 will come in a larger package when it's launched at an Aug. 13 event in New York. Photo: Reuters
Samsung's flagship Galaxy Edge 6 will come in a larger package when it's launched at an Aug. 13 event in New York. Photo: Reuters

Samsung looks to bigger Galaxy but there’s a problem

Bigger is better.

Samsung Electronics Co. is betting on that notion in a dramatic revamp of its product line this year.

The move underscores the pressures the South Korean technology giant faces as its mobile earnings take a hit from Apple Inc. and Chinese rivals.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Samsung is planning to introduce a larger version of its flagship Galaxy S6 Edge curved smartphone at an Aug. 13 event in New York.

Samsung is tweaking its product releases to try to maintain consumer interest in its mobile products which have struggled amid a sea of increasingly similar offerings from competitors.

But in doing so, the company risks overshadowing the nominal star of the show — the latest refresh of Samsung’s Galaxy Note series of smartphone-tablet hybrids.

In recent years, Samsung has used an early September trade show in Berlin to showcase its new Galaxy Note device.

But it moved up the launch date this year to mid-August to avoid being drowned out by hype around Apple’s annual September iPhone event.

Instead, the new Galaxy Note 5 smartphone might be eclipsed by the Galaxy S6 Edge Plus, which boasts all the features of Samsung’s popular flagship device, in the larger-size format pioneered by the Galaxy Note series.

Samsung created a new category for oversized handsets when it launched its first Galaxy Note device in 2011.

Although mocked at first, these came to dominate the mainstream smartphone market.

But when Apple released its iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus last fall, it took away one of Samsung’s key selling points.

Some market-data trackers said earlier this year that, after the release of the new iPhones, Apple had topped Samsung in quarterly smartphone sales for the first time since 2011.

And earlier this month, Hong Kong-based Counterpoint Technology Market Research said the two iPhones had occupied the No. 1 slot in smartphone sales for a ninth consecutive month in June, ahead of Samsung’s Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge.

Releasing the Galaxy S6 Edge Plus allows Samsung to try to capitalize again on the popularity of its curved-edge flagship device, the Galaxy S6 Edge, which was a hit with critics and consumers when it was released in April.

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