Tag: samsung

iPhone 7 has the worst battery

lemon batteryThe British consumer group Which? has pointed out that the iPhone 7 has the worst battery life than any other top smartphone.

The outfit conducted a series of battery life tests on the latest smartphones including the Samsung Galaxy S7, HTC 10 and LG G5, Apple’s iPhone 7 was so bad it did not even rank.

The Samsung Galaxy S7 battery lasted more than twice as long as the iPhone 7, while the HTC 10 had two and a half times the longevity. The iPhone 7 did better in internet usage tests… but it was still found bringing up the rear.

The iPhone 7 should have had all the advantages. It was the newest phone and had the iOS 10, while the three other handsets all featured Android 6.0 Marshmallow. But whatever efficiency optimization Apple put into iOS 10, it cant solve the fact that Apple put a 1,960mAh battery under the bonnet.

In a blog post, Which?’s Callum Tennent said:

“In the interest of fairness, we test battery life using our own phone network simulator. This ensures that the signal strength is consistent for each test, which is important as a phone has to expend more power when it’s struggling for reception. We also set the screen brightness on every phone to the same level. Finally, we perform a full ‘power cycle’ of each phone’s battery prior to testing — that means fully discharging and then charging it.”

For the tests we made a continuous call over 3G for the call time test and access a regularly updating special web page over 3G to measure web browsing time.

which-battery-tests

Samsung will replace Note 7s by the end of the year

Samsung-Galaxy-S7-ReviewSamsung has promised to re-launch its flagship Note7 smartphone across Europe well before year-end, but has warned that it might not be until next year that it fully recovered from the defective battery fiasco.

David Lowes, Samsung’s chief marketing officer in Europe, said he expected new Note7s to be available everywhere by the end of November and well before the end of the fourth quarter.

The outfit has pledged to sell no new models until it fully completes the exchange of existing Note7S with faulty batteries,. An estimated 2.5 million Note7s were sold before the battery flaws led Samsung to issue a global recall early this month.

Samsung plans to resume Note7 sales in South Korea on 28 September Sales are to resume in Australia and Singapore in October, according to the company, which has not yet said when they will be available in other regions.

“We are confident that we can start to make up any ground that we have lost and get that momentum back into our business… get that total momentum back as we exit 2016 and set ourselves up for a strong 2017,” he said.

The Note7 was recalled in 10 markets globally, including the United States and Samsung’s home market of South Korea. Most of the affected phones sold in Europe shipped to three markets: Britain, Germany and France, Lowes said.

Lowes thinks the entire recall could be done in two weeks, clearing the way for new phone sales, although he admits this might be a tad ambitious  given the complexity of reaching consumers through its extensive chain of distributors and marketing partners.

“Our mindset is to be expediting this over that time period and not have it continuing and continuing.  Lowes cautioned that this goal may prove ambitious in practice.

Lowes said there was still pent-up demand for its marquee phone product in Europe, which was still largely in the pre-order rather than mass roll-out phase, with Note7 not yet available in many markets after launching in August. Samsung has no plans to scale back on its original marketing plans, he said.

 

Samsung can’t get people to part with Note 7

SamsungDespite a recall and well organised scare campaign by reporters loyal to Apple, Samsung can’t get owners to part with their Note 7.

For those who came in late, the Note 7 appeared to have battery problems which caused some of them to melt. Samsung started a recall procedure but not before the Tame Apple Press started printing stories of “exploding” phones and the US government took the unprecedented step of banning them on flights. The fact that US company Apple had just released its lack-lustre iPhone 7 had nothing to do with it. Honest.

Samsung has just announced that it has shipped 500,000 replacement Galaxy Note 7 devices to US retailers and carriers. They’ll be available beginning tomorrow to owners of the original,  Note 7 for in-store exchanges.

This first batch of replenishment stock is intended exclusively for exchanges; Samsung hasn’t yet said when Note 7 retail sales will officially resume, probably in October.

But Samsung is having trouble getting people to part with their original phones. It says less than a quarter have been exchanged in the United States.

Samsung thinks that is an extraordinarily fast start toward achieving our goal of removing every single affected Note 7 from circulation. But given how much fear has been raised in the press, it does suggest that the company might have a few problems prising notes from the hands of users.

The theory is that the exchange rate will shoot up much quicker now that consumers can make a direct swap for Samsung’s latest batch of Note 7 shipments.

 

Chip industry still suffering from economic crunch

snail-8296a552f7bd1064368205306ff8a3c7c7bdc7c4-s900-c85The chip industry is still in the doldrums and that isn’t going to change anytime soon.

That’s the verdict of Malcolm Penn, CEO and chairman of UK semiconductor analysts Future Horizons.

At a semiconductor conference in London, Penn said that the chip industry is driven by four factors: the economy, fab capacity, unit demand and average selling prices (ASPs).

Penn said: “The economy is in a mess and it’s not getting any better. It’s the ‘wait one more quarter’ syndrome. Nobody reacts when the data is good because they don’t believe it.”

He said that 2016 seemed to be an almost exact replay of 2015. Nobody believes in the numbers any more, he said.

“No-one is spending money. There are no new killer products on the horizon. There is nothing, nothing at all.”

Killer apps can’t be predicted and have always been a surprise, Penn said. The outlook is somewhat grim.

“No one knows how to restart the engines.

Regionally, he said, the picture is also pessimistic. “Japan is a complete disaster. China is on a downward trend. Russia has shot itself in the foot,” he said. “Newly industrialised Asian countries have run out of steam. The overall trend is decidedly bad.”

So what of the future?

Historically, integrated circuits (ICs) have shown a 10 percent growth but, he said, the current trend is low with only a six percent figure in 2016. He said: “PC and smartphone IC shipments are still relatively very small. Unit demand is driven by the economy, and the PC market is as dead as a dodo.”

The figures over the last four years show a steady decline, 9.5 percent growth in 2013, 8.3 percent in 2014, 5.1 percent in 2015 and six percent this year.

He said: “Fab capacity is in the hands of the few. No there is no excess capacity. It takes a year to add new capacity and the lead time has never changed.”

As far as capital expenditure (CapEx) goes, Intel, Samsung and TSMC rule, he said at 60 percent CapEx. That’s not true for Global Foundries (GloFo) which is only nine percent.

He said: “A capacity shortage is waiting to happen. At some point of time there will be a shortage and it will catch everyone by surprise.” And most of the bigger fabs are in earthquake zones.

He’s gloomy about next year too. In 2017 he expects a weak PC and smartphone market.

“The economy is still horrid. There’s no life in the semiconductor business.”

Samsung might retreat from the Galaxy Note 7

43367Samsung might be gearing up to back away from the Galaxy Note 7 as a tainted brand, even though the problem was a faulty battery.

Samsung has recalled the Galaxy Note 7 due to faulty batteries and stopped selling it. Sales are likely to remain suspended until it provides replacement inventory. Only then will Samsung resume sales and the company is yet to announce a timeframe for that, although it should be October.

It might have marketing blitz for the Galaxy Note 7 after to rebuild consumer confidence in its new phablet. But this would cost a lot of dosh.

Some analysts believe that this is going to force Samsung to advance the Galaxy S8 release next year so it can kill off the Note 7 early.

Analysts believe that launching a new flagship smartphone is going to be a more realistic solution to deal with this recall debacle. An early launch of the Galaxy S8 could help Samsung reduce sales impact from the recall.

Samsung has not talked about its Galaxy S8 yet – normally it would do that at the Mobile World Congress.

It is a bit of a disaster because the Galaxy Note 7 was far in advance of its rivals and slightly cheaper.

Samsung issues software upgrade for “not so magnificent” Note 7

The-Magnificent-Seven-2016-Full-Movie-Watch-OnlineSamsung will start a software upgrade next week to limit the battery charging cap of Galaxy Note 7 to 60 percent which is designed to stop explosions.

The Over-the-Air (OTA) software upgrade will commence on September 20, 10 am in South Korea and it is not really going to solve the battery problem. It is more designed to prevent the not so magnificent seven exploding when users ignore warnings to turn the thing off.

Samsung wants users to return the phone so they can put in a new battery. When the battery overcharges it is more likely to explode, so the software update prevents that. Of course it makes the phone less useful, but it is better being less useful than turning the user into a suicide bomber.

Samsung is in talks with telcos from nine other countries where the phablet is available to deploy a similar software upgrade.

Galaxy Note 7 has a battery capacity of 3,500 mAh, but the forced upgrade will enforce it to 2,100 mAh.

The measure is meant to protect people who are still using the Note 7 despite recommendation to halt use.

When the exchange starts on September 19 in South Korea, the tech giant will also offer to pay parts of the data fee.

Last week, the US government asked owners of Note 7s to immediately power down the phones and halt use.

Apple increases iPhone 7 orders

apple-dalek-2Fruity tax dodger Apple has hiked orders for parts and components required for the production of the upcoming iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, after its rival Samsung announced its Note 7 was having battery problems.

For those who came in late, Apple is going to be releasing its iPhone 7 and 7 Plus which is basically the iPhone 6 and 6S with a better chip and no headphone jack.  Neither Apple nor analysts expected the phone to do very well and predicted shipments of the iPhone 7 this year would reach only 60 percent of that number over the same period.

But after the Note 7 started experiencing battery problems, Apple suddenly boosted the number of iPhone 7 orders by ten percent.

The figure is not much, but it does indicate that Apple thinks it can squeeze a few more sales on the back of Samsung’s troubles.  The Note 7 as a direct competitor to Apple’s 5.5-inch iPhones.

Samsung has told customers it will take at least 14 days to replace their phones, and with several mobile operators including T-Mobile offering full refunds to Note buyers over the same week the new iPhones are expected to be announced.

The Tame Apple press is flat out trying to save Apple’s bacon on the move, claiming that suddenly the piss-poor upgrade is “tempting.” Others have even suggested that Samsung’s woes were because it was trying to race Apple to the market with a comparable phone.  However Samsung’s phone is much better than what is believed to be the iPhone 7 spec and the battery woes are nothing to do with the design.  In fact the Note 7 had glowing reviews and the battery issue was caused by a third party part.

Previous information from notable smartphone leaker Even Blass suggested pre-orders for the iPhone 7 will take place this Friday, September 9, two days after the debut event with a launch for September 16.

This will give Samsung time to sort out its problems and have a minimum impact on the iPhone 7 sales. Some Apple suppliers reportedly are worried that the uplift could be short-lived, given that order volumes for new parts and components may start drifting down in Q4 “on seasonality.”

 

Samsung expected to recall the flaming Galaxy Note 7

fire-intro-picSamsung is expected to recall of all of its newest Galaxy Note 7 phablets sold at home and abroad in less than a week after reports that a few of the devices exploded while being charged.

The Samsung official told Yonhap News Agency that the cause of the reported explosions has been traced to the battery of the new phablet.

“The most important thing is the safety of our customers and we don’t want to disappoint our loyal customers,” said the official, who spoke to the Yonyap news agency.

Samsung is expected to announce the result of its investigation into the cause of the reported explosions, as well as comprehensive countermeasures either this weekend or early next week at the latest.

“Products installed with the problematic battery account for less than 0.1 percent of the entire volume sold. The problem can be simply resolved by changing the battery, but we’ll come up with convincing measures for our consumers,” said the official.

The official said the company’s announcement of the recall is unlikely this week because Samsung is in talks with Verizon of the US and other business partners on the issue.

“Global discussions are under way about matters such as how to deal with products delivered to dealers. Results of the investigation and relevant countermeasures will be made public this weekend or early next week at the latest.”

“We don’t have any intention to delay (the announcement) or hide (the result of investigation). The decision will be made in consideration of maximum consumer benefit.”

Industry watchers say Samsung will be able to take the likely recall as an opportunity to upgrade its credibility, as long as it takes prompt and convincing measures. The phabet has only been out a couple of weeks.

Only Apple and Samsung make money out of smartphones

apple-dalek-2Only Apple and Samsung are making money from smartphones and Apple is losing ground fast.

According to beancounters working for Canaccord Genuity, Apple accounted for 75 percent of the smartphone industry’s profits in the second quarter, but that’s down from more than 90 percent a year ago due to Samsung’s Galaxy device success.

Samsung’s Galaxy S7 launch and the Note 7 follow-up likely indicate that profits will continue to do well,.

Cannaccord Genuity analyst T. Michael Walkley said that Apple’s industry profit was also suffering because punters were delaying purchases ahead of the iPhone 7 launch. Although it is a moot point if that particular product will do well.  Either way Samsung has captured more than 30 percent of industry profits in the second quarter.

Walkley said that Apple’s industry profit share is at its lowest point since the second quarter of 2014 before the iPhone 6 launched.

However it does look like all the other makers trying to get in the high end of the market are not scratching the surface.

Walkley said: ” Given the ramp of Chinese OEM smartphone volumes and particularly strong 2015 smartphone market share gains for Huawei, we note our industry profit analysis excludes a large portion of this group of OEMs gaining an increasing share of the smartphone market profits due to the lack of available and comparable profit metrics. While this likely overstates Apple’s profits, we note some leading smartphone OEMs in China are growing global market share through aggressive pricing strategies limiting near-term profit levels. Inside the Greater China region, share has shifted to Chinese OEMs as well. In fact, in Q2/C15 Apple was number 1 vendor of smartphones in China, and we now believe in Q2/C16 Apple fell to the number 5 vendor behind Huawei, OPPO, Xiaomi and VIVO.”

 

Another Tizen arrives in India

Samsung-Z1Samsung is to start peddling its third smartphone powered by the company’s own Tizen mobile operating system in India next week.

The operating system which sounds like a sneeze is being used by Samsung to break free from Google’s iron grip.  As yet the company has not been keen to try it out on more developed markets but it has been able to improve margins in developing countries.

The Z2 phone, equipped with a 4-inch screen and India-specific features such as a safety mode for motorcyclists, will be the cheapest Tizen phone Samsung has launched and costs $68.44.

The phone, the first Tizen-powered device that will run on 4G networks, will start selling in India in a week.

Samsung is getting addicted to Tizen and uses it on tellies, home appliances and wearable products to enable the devices to communicate with each other and phones via the internet.

It is mostly being seen in India and Bangladesh, where many potential customers are still first-time buyers looking for a cheap device and do not necessarily need a big library of apps.  Tizen’s weakness is that it lacks the number of Android Apps.