Apple is currently devoting an inordinate amount of legal resources in its effort to prevent Samsung from releasing a bevy of products it claims purposefully infringe upon Apple patents and slavishly copy the look and feel of iOS.
Currently, Apple’s legal team is working tirelessly to prevent Samsung from releasing its Galaxy Tab 10.1. Earlier this year, Samsung released a 7-inch tablet in an effort to take on Apple and if you listen to some folks at Lenovo, that effort was a complete and utter disaster.
Speaking to the Guardian, Andrew Barrow, who serves as Lenovo’s director of consumer products and pricing, explained that when companies try and compete with Apple via price undercutting, they end up losing money – and let’s face it, don’t even garner substantive marketshare.
Fleshing out his statement, Barrow proceeded to use Samsung as an example.
Samsung said at the end of 2010 that it had shipped 1m of its 7-inch Galaxy devices, which were seen as the first real Android competitors to Apple’s iPad. However, according to Barrow, Samsung only sold 20,000 of the tablets. Samsung had not returned a request for comment on Barrow’s claim by the time of publication.
Lenovo announced its own entry into the Android tablet market at the IFA technology show in Berlin on Thursday, with the IdeaPad K1. Asked whether the K1, which will launch in mid-September with a starting price of £349, should be much cheaper than the market-leading iPad 2, priced from £399, Barrow told The Guardian that “at that price, any [manufacturer] would be giving money away”.
Samsung has never given details of the actual sales it has made in the tablet market. In an earnings call at the end of January, Samsung executives admitted that the company had shipped far more tablets than had actually been sold, saying that the latter figure was “quite smooth” – a puzzling phrase that was never explained.
We’re not sure what Barrow’s source is here, but as Steve Jobs like to say, if you sell a lot of a particular product, you tend to advertise it and brag about it.
It’s entirely possible, if not probable, that Samsung is partaking in the time dishonored tradition of channel stuffing whereby they stuff as many products down the throats of retailers as possible and tout their “products shipped” numbers with pride, all the while said products aren’t finding their way into the hands of consumers.
Samsung’s 7-inch tablet notwithstanding, Samsung’s flagship tablet is the upcoming Galaxy Tab 10.1 – a device that bears a remarkable similarity to Apple’s iPad. Consequently, Apple was able to attain a temporary injunction in Germany precluding Samsung from selling and marketing the device in the country until a formal hearing on the matter can be had. A similar ruling was handed down against Samsung in Australia as well.