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Samsung Electronics Unveils Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge

On February 21 (local time), Samsung Electronics held Samsung Galaxy Unpack 2016 event at the Barcelona International Convention Center (CCIB), Spain, and unveiled smartphone Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, and Gear 360, a camera that can film in 360°.

 

Koh Dongjin, Samsung Electronics Mobile Communications Business president, announced that at this important time of change in the mobile industry, Samsung Electronics will provide not only smartphone but also the comprehensive experience and value for the consumers through diverse products, contents, and service surrounding the smartphone. He added that the company will pay even more attention to the consumers in future and lead the mobile market through ceaseless challenges in new technology and areas.

 

4 items were much emphasized in Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge. Firstly, for the camera, the latest technology used in the top DSLR, dual pixel image sensor was applied to smartphone for the first time in the world. Particularly, the demonstration of Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge camera’s superiority through the comparison with iPhone 6S is analyzed to be a move to come ahead in the future competition with iPhone.

 

The second is the battery capacity. Despite that the embedded battery of S6 and S6 Edge was considered a great drawback, the same was applied to the most recent S7 and S7 Edge. However, the battery capacity increased by 38%, in the case of S7 Edge, with 3,600 mAh, and improved on the disadvantage of embedded battery.

 

The third is the low energy consumption environment. AOD (always-on display) was applied, and also to meet the trend of heavy gaming use, the next generation graphic Vulkan API (application programming interface) is supported that can be also used on consoles, minimizing the energy consumption.

 

Fourthly, the new smartphone has the waterproof and dustproof function. The highest standard in waterproof/dustproof IP68 grade was applied to Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, and provides highest protection. With this function applied to the entire smartphone including components such as USB terminal and earphone jack, waterproofing is possible without a USB cover.

 

Additionally, Samsung Electronics expanded the Galaxy ecosystem and revealed Gear 360, a camera that can take pictures and videos in 360° at the Samsung Galaxy Unpack 2016.

 

Gear 360 has two 195° fish-eye lenses that can take 180° wide angle pictures and videos. These can be put together and generate contents that can be viewed in 360° horizontally and vertically. This can be viewed in virtual reality through Gear VR.

 

Gear 360 can be connected to Galaxy S7, S7 Edge, S6, S6 Edge+, Note5, S6 Edge, and S6, and can film through smartphone application, preview and upload the contents to social network and Google Street View.

 

Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge will be available in 4 colors (white pearl, silver titanium, gold platinum, and black onyx) with luxurious and glass quality. Gear 360 is expected to be released in white in the first half of 2016.

Minus Growth for H1 OLED Material Market with Mere US$ 564 Million*

According to UBI Research, the 2015 H1 OLED material market recorded approximately US$ 564 million; this is a 14% increase compared to 2014 H2, but a 24% decrease against 2014 H1.

 

Despite reports that Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics are selling much larger volumes of flexible OLED applied Galaxy S6 Edge and OLED TV respectively compared to last year, the OLED material market is gradually stagnating.

 

The main reason for this OLED material market’s downward turn is Samsung Display’s operation level which remained stationary at 50% in H1. This led to stationary material usage compared to the year before. LG Display is producing flexible OLED and large size OLED panel for TV. However, approximately only 100,000 units of OLED panels were sold in H1 and material usage was also lowl. The current capa. is 34K but as the OLED material cost spent in H1 is approximately US$ 36 million, the operation rate is analyzed to be only 30% of the total capa.

 

The OLED material market is decreasing because the supply price is rapidly falling without increase in production volume. OLED material companies are frustrated at the 10-15% price decrease per quarter. At present, as the only clients are Samsung Display and LG Display, material companies are compelled to reduce the price as the failure to do so could lead toward the termination of business. OLED material companies spend several thousands of millions of dollars annually on development to meet constant improvement demanded by clients. There is much difficulty for OLED material companies as display companies continue with one-sided demands without compensation regarding development cost.

 

For OLED industry to maintain its continued growth, it requires more than success of panel companies. Material companies that play a pivotal part within the industry have to continue development and production of quality materials in order to create a healthy growth cycle. However, display companies are destroying the ecosystem.

 

What OLED material companies currently crave is for Chinese display companies to mass produce OLED panels as soon as possible.

 

* 1 USD = 1,100 KRW

 

OLED Material Market Revenue 2014 H1 – 2015 H1

OLED Material Market Revenue 2014 H1 – 2015 H1

HUD and HMD Meet Virtual Reality and Soar

At SID 2015 Review Workshop held in Konkuk University on July 31, Inha University’s Associate Professor Jae-Hyeung Park announced that interest in HUD (head-up display) and HMD (head-mounted display) increased at SID 2015.

 

HUD signifies technology that provides diverse information for the driver beyond the role of a front glass that simply allows the outside to be viewed and provides protection. Through HUD, drivers can grasp vehicular and destination information without having to take eyes off the road. At this juncture, AR (augmented reality) HUD is more than a simple display as it recognize the user’s movements and applies it to the display.

 

In SID 2015 paper, Japan’s Ricoh termed the device that self-intervenes in the vehicular operation as ADAS (Advanced Driving Assistance System) and announced that the information from the device applied to HUD will be able to help the user’s recognition and decision making. It was also added that improved AR can be realized when the contrast range is increased to be equal to reality and reiterated and the distance from the virtual image is 5m.

 

HMD, as a head-mounted device, provides differentiated feelings of immersion compared to other displays. Due to the increased realism from the wide viewing angle, HMD was widely used as an entertainment display, but with the recent increased interest in AR, it is receiving much spotlight as an AR display device.

 

At SID 2015, the West Saxon University of Applied Sciences of Zwickau revealed an HMD device that actualizes AR naturally by changing the distance where image is shown according to the use by adjusting the focal distance. Zhejiang University’s college of Optical Science and Engineering used method of showing hologram to each user’s eyes using the light field concept that realizes the light strength to all directions from all points in 3D and produced improved AR.

 

Park explained that with SID 2015 as a starting point, the AR related HMD and HUD interest and research will increases greatly and that the trend will continue in future.

 

Samsung Electronics released HMD device Samsung Gear VR that can be used by plugging in to Galaxy S6 or Galaxy S6 Edge. Oculus VR and Sony Computer Entertainment each revealed OLED applied VR headset Oculus Rift and Project Morpheus, and scheduled release regular product in Q1 and H1 of 2016 respectively. Korea’s HLB released AproVIEW S2 which used virtual image distance actualization method, a first for HUD.

 

 

Inha University’s Associate Professor Jae-Hyeung Park at SID 2015 Review Workshop

Inha University’s Associate Professor Jae-Hyeung Park at SID 2015 Review Workshop

Samsung Electronics Announces Flexible Price Strategy for Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge in H2

Samsung's Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge

Samsung’s Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge

On July 30, Samsung Electronics announced their second quarter earnings results and future outlook via conference call.

 

The sales of IM (Information Technology and Mobile Communications) department recorded approximately US$ 13,000,000,000, a 1% increase from the previous quarter. The business profit of approximately US$ 2,000,000,000 was recorded, an increase of US$ 17,000,000.

 

Although the overall sales increased through Galaxy S6 release, due to the supply issues of Galaxy S6 Edge, and increase in marketing cost, the business profit did not much increase. Samsung Elec. explained that due to the decrease in sales of low-mid-price old models, degrowth was shown compared to the previous quarter. However, ASP was much improved due to product mix development.

 

Robert Yi, chief of the firm’s investor relations team, revealed that 89,000,000 units of mobile phones and 8,000,000 units of tablets were sold in the second quarter. The ASP of these products recorded mid US$ 200s. Of the mobile phone sales, the percentage of smartphone sales was in low 80s.

 

Yi announced their plan to increase the market share through flexible price strategy for Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge in the second half and strengthening of low-to-mid price smartphone line up. He also mentioned that enlargement of display size and AMOLED panel use could occur for future lower priced items.

 

The price of Galaxy S6 Edge that exceeded US$ 1,200 initially, recorded US$ 739 in the second week of July. If the currently operational A3 line yield improves and investment for transforming part of rigid A2 line to flexible occurs, flexible AMOLED panel’s mass production capa. will increase from the second half. This will simplify AMOLED panel supply process, and it is analyzed that the flexible price strategy for Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge will be feasible.

 

For the display section, it was revealed that the results were slow compared to the previous quarter due to increase of cost from new flexible display line ramp up and decrease in smartphone demand. Samsung Elec. explained that in the second half, they are planning to increase the market leadership through flexible technology improvement. The new growth power will be achieved through development of new applications such as transparent, mirror, and head mounted display.

 

Samsung Elec. revealed that there was difficulty in acquiring initial supply regarding the Galaxy S6 Edge. They explained that this was due to the use of new technology, including the large area evaporation technology of A3 line that began operation in April this year. However, the problem has now been solved and reliable supply is possible, and the firm revealed the possibility of supply of flexible OLED panel to external companies. The panels will be supplied to meet the needs of client and market, and some capa. establishment will also occur next year. Product performance and production cost competitiveness are improving, and the firm revealed strategy of increasing the OLED panel sales to external companies this year.

 

During this conference call, Samsung Elec. revealed that the total sales was recorded to be approximately US$ 41,000,000,000 in second quarter of this year which is a 3% increase compared to the previous quarter. The business profit recorded approximately US$ 6,000,000,000, an increase of 15% compared to the previous quarter.

 

A3 Line Operation Capacity Pushes Down Galaxy S6 Edge Price

The price of Galaxy S6 Edge, which initially exceeded approximately US$ 1,200 when released, recorded US$ 739 in second week of July 2015 (source: www.amazon.com). This is more than a 40% decrease in price in about 3 months, and it is analyzed that this is 5% greater price reduction than Galaxy S6, and approximately 13% greater than Galaxy Note 4 Edge.

The period where the decrease is highest is between third and fourth week of April with approximately 23% drop. The biggest reason for this is analyzed to be active operation of A3 line from April. As A3 line began mass producing Galaxy S6 Edge flexible AMOLED panel, the supply shortage issue improved, and yield and productivity increased more than existing flexible AMOLED panel applied to Galaxy Note 4 Edge.

Samsung Display’s current flexible AMOLED panel mass production lines are a section of A2 line and A3 line. It is expected that investment that will convert a part of rigid panel A2 line to flexible will be carried out and the line will be in operation in the second half of 2015. Following this, from the second half of this year, flexible AMOLED panel mass production capacity will further improve and it will become easier to acquire the panels. The industry’s attention is focused on how Samsung Display’s flexible AMOLED line investment will affect the sales of future flexible AMOLED panel applied Galaxy models.

Galaxy S6 Series Price Change Comparison

Galaxy S6 Series Price Change Comparison

 

[MWC2015] Samsung Electronics’ Galaxy 6 and the ‘ultimate weapon’ Galaxy S6 Edge

Samsung Electronics, currently leading the world’s smart phone market along with Apple, showcased intensively developed Galaxy 6 and the ‘ultimate weapon’ Galaxy S6 Edge.

Following Galaxy S5, S6 used rigid AMOLED panel. However, Galaxy S6 Edge, following Galaxy Note 4 Edge, used flexible AMOLED and chose a new design where both sides of the edge are curved.

At the Samsung Elec.’s unpack event, held a day before the opening of MWC2015, Samsung Elec. CEO JK Shin was confident that everything changed except for the name. Galaxy S6 is Samsung Elec.’s ‘ultimate weapon’ where they concentrated all of their efforts in order to rectify S5’s slump. Galaxy S6’s 64-bit, 14-nanometer AP, 577ppi flexible AMOLED, and wireless charging technologyare such efforts. Its design that includes metal body, 2-sided edge, and graceful curves that link display and body is also a masterpiece that was not seen in any other products.

The main reason that Samsung Elec. could apply artistic design was flexible AMOLED produced by Samsung Display. It allowed the product to express the elegantly curved lines of hanbok, Korean traditional dress, through the main body and arched 4-sided corners. Furthermore, the chemistry of the glistening metal body together with the deep blue, a first for flexible AMOLED, can cut the most appealing figure of the existing smart phones.

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