As you all know already, Samsung’s new smartphone – the Galaxy S8 has lots riding on it, especially since it is the first major handset release after the well known exploding battery debacle that followed the Galaxy Note 7. That is why there is a lot of pressure on the S8 which practically must be perfect from the moment it gets revealed to the moment it goes on sale. We have all grown accustomed to the fact that this South Korean company releases its annual flagship phone on the Mobile World Congress that is held in February, but it appears that this year it won’t be the case.
According to a report from Sammobile, Samsung is supposed to delay the launch of the S8 until April which is around eight weeks after the expected introduction date. The delay is, apparently, not only because the battery problem that the Note 7 had has to be completely resolved, but also because the company’s marketing team has to bring back and even increase the consumer confidence in the brand and in their flagship phone. But do not think that a decision to push back the release came that easily. There is more than one argument why the S8 should be launched in February and delivered in March at latest.
First reason is financial. If the S8 releases in March than the first sales figures would count in the Q1 of 2017 which would greatly help remedy the downfall of Q4 of 2016 Note 7 holiday sales. As the Note 7 made Samsung lose its financial momentum and Q3 of 2016 being low as it were, Q4 is set to follow thanks to the overall situation. The launch of the S8 in February could, at least in the short term, act like a stop-loss on the financials. There is also one more thing. Since the Galaxy S8 is made to target the Galaxy S6 users who are coming to the end of a two-year contract, they would naturally search a new handset, and the released S8 would come in a rescue. But there is a broader picture here. If Samsung pushes the S8 release too fast, like it did with the Note 7 (in order to beat the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus), then they might get considered as reckless and foolish in doing so.
What must be done here, very smartly, is to slowly regain the confidence of the broader public that probably haven’t forgiven Samsung totally. With continued recalls, FAA warning announcements, and the forced bricking of Note 7 handsets that remained out there, consumers have endured a lot, and Samsung must take a cautious approach towards them. The best way to do so is to reintroduce the tech to the public that was meant to debut in the Note 7 – hardware such as the iris recognition for biometric security – which basically requires more work on the PR and marketing side than any other.
The push of the S8 release until April has some tactical advantages that the company can utilize. Thanks to Mobile World Congress every Samsung’s Android-powered rival will have their product shown there, while the Samsung’s press release will practically have the last move with this generation of handsets, which is not that bad. More time will give Samsung an opportunity to explain the public the deal with S8, more time will help the Note 7 to fade into forgiveness, and more time equals additional opportunity to place the smartphone in a way so it would beat all others.