On paper, the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 seems to be little more than a sequel, and it is obvious that it will not be as powerful as the rumored Galaxy Z Fold 3. Despite this, the Samsung Z Flip 3 should be a much larger event for the company.
In fact, because of the stakes involved — both for Samsung and for the whole foldable phone category — the destiny of the new Z Flip is probably even more significant than the fate of the impending iPhone 13 release.
To say that the Galaxy Z Flip 3 launch has a great deal riding on it would be an underestimate of the magnitude of the stakes. And, given the alleged difficulties the firm is experiencing with the Galaxy S21 series, Samsung could need a boost right now, according to analysts.
Only a few days ago, Counterpoint Research announced that Xiaomi had surpassed Samsung to become the world’s largest smartphone manufacturer for the first time in history. Xiaomi took top place with 17.1 percent of the vote, followed by Samsung in second place with 15.7 percent and Apple in third place with 14.3 percent.
A report in the Korean publication The Elec claims that Samsung is extending a management review of its mobile business in response to the alarmingly low sales of the Galaxy S21 series, which is said to have sold only 13.5 million units during the first six months of the year, according to the report. When compared to the mid-20 million devices sold for the Galaxy S20 and over 30 million units sold for the Galaxy S series before that, this is a small number.
There are a lot of things riding on the success or failure of the Galaxy Z Flip 3, which is being positioned as the more mainstream and affordable foldable phone. This is being referred to as a special review, which is “done without warning when the top leadership believes there is a problem with a particular business unit.” In fact, rumors indicate that the Flip will be significantly reduced in price, with one leak claiming that the Flip 3 may be as cheap as $999.
The Galaxy Z Flip 3 is also expected to have a bigger exterior display, more robust construction that is water-resistant, and a greater number of applications that can make use of Flex mode, according to reports.
Especially at a time when Samsung is portraying foldable phones as the future, the company simply cannot afford for the Z Flip 3 to be a disappointment. If customers conclude that a clamshell foldable is just not what they want, Samsung may be forced to reconsider its approach for the whole foldable category.
Meanwhile, Apple is allegedly speeding up production for the iPhone 13, with the company expecting even more demand than it did for the iPhone 12 in the first place. According to a recent Bloomberg estimate, Apple plans to produce 90 million iPhone 13 devices by the end of the year, representing a 20 percent increase over the previous year’s production.
When you look at the real speculations, though, it’s clear to understand why some people are referring to the iPhone 13 as the iPhone 12s instead. The design is anticipated to remain substantially the same, with the exception of a smaller notch. Most of the improvements seem to be on the inside, with a faster and more efficient A15 Bionic processor, as well as a potential new portrait video mode and astrophotography capabilities, among other things.
The iPhone 13 Pro series seems to be a larger issue, since both the Pro and Pro Max are expected to include 120Hz screens and an always-on mode, according to reports.
Despite all of the excitement around the iPhone 13, Apple seems to be in a better position to withstand a lukewarm response than Samsung. Apple’s recent financial figures indicate that virtually every aspect of the company is thriving, with iPhone revenue increasing by 65.5 percent year over year, services increasing by 26.7 percent, Macs increasing by 70 percent, and iPads increasing by 78.9 percent.
After releasing the Galaxy Z Flip 3, Samsung will be able to demonstrate that all of the money it has been putting into foldable has been developing towards something meaningful rather than simply another gimmick.
To put it another way, this comes at a time when the Galaxy S21 seems to be suffering. Samsung doesn’t want the Galaxy Z Flip 3 to be overlooked by consumers, even though a more powerful Galaxy S22 is set to be early next year as a replacement. Otherwise, Samsung may be forced to abandon its foldable effort and shift its focus to something else entirely.