Samsung upbeat on PH smartphone market

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Despite the introduction of new products by rival firms, South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics Co. expects to maintain its dominance in the Philippine mobile device market, citing its innovative offerings and presence in all product segments.

Samsung Philippines officials on Thursday said smartphones continued to drive growth in the sales of mobile devices as consumers embraced mobile applications that could be accessed only by phones connected to the web.

“Growth is coming from the smartphone segment in the Philippines. Consumers are embracing functions that are not available on feature phones,” said Coco Domingo, product marketing head at Samsung Philippines’ mobile division.

The company declined to give exact figures, but Domingo said Samsung remained the leader in the mobile space across all segments, covering smartphones, feature phones and tablet computers.

Domingo said prices had gone down substantially in the past year to the point that some smartphones were now just slightly more expensive than feature phones, also referred to in the industry as “dumb” phones.

He said the company was unfazed by the recent launches of high-end devices by rival tech firms. These devices include the new BlackBerry Z10 by Canada’s BlackBerry, the Xperia Z smartphone by Japan’s Sony and LG Electronics’ new Optimus G.

These new devices are expected to compete directly with Samsung’s new Galaxy S4 smartphone that was unveiled in New York last month. The S4 is not yet available in the Philippines, but Domingo said the new smartphone would be offered by local telcos “soon.”

Samsung Philippines launched yesterday its new Galaxy Note 8.0, an 8-inch tablet computer that features Internet connectivity. The Galaxy Note 8.0 was unveiled at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain last February.

The Note 8.0 features a 1.6-gigahertz processor, 2 gigabytes or RAM, and 16 gigabytes of internal storage. The device runs on the Jellybean, the latest version of Google’s Android operating system.

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