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Samsung. Out of new ideas to copy

Andrew Reid

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Apple better hurry up and innovate. Samsung smartphones are dying!

S8 was the pinnacle, since then they have run out of ideas.

S9... Zzzz. So the Note 9 was the big chance to do something!

Oh. Dear. A better stylus. Erm. What else?


It's a great phone but it has no adventurous ideas whatsoever.

Samsung are a hardware company, that's what they do best. Great cameras, great screens, build quality. Beyond that, when it comes to software innovation  they're lost and just copy others. They have tacked on some gimmicky AI features to the Note 9 camera like blink-detection, but little else is new.

They need a great visionary in their smartphone division, whose job it is to differentiate it from stock Android in exciting ways. Answer there definitely isn't Bixby, DEX and TouchWiz. I am talking meaningful leaps in development of Android as an OS, without reliance on Google to do it for them.

In copying Apple by recognising the importance of software in driving the product forward they just can't seem to bring any new ideas to the table. I think it is time for Samsung to switch to a 2-year cycle on their smartphones and emphasise the new hardware differences. They don't stand a chance in the ideas department if their idea of innovative is a stylus that doubles as a pointy stick remote.

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Hahaha. People haven't been listening.

To Commemorate it's 10th Edition (of the S10), as well as introduce the Galaxy X, Samsung has been making some incremental yet important updates to its present models (the S9 and Note10).

The Super Radical Improvements are reserved for the S10 (with its 2-3 models), and the GalaxyX.

Right now the changes are subtle but very welcome (having a more powerful processor by increasing power from 2.3 to 2.7-8 Ghz, increasing RAM from 6Gb to 8Gb, improving the feature in the SPen, substantial battery size increase from 3300mAh to 4000mAh, increasing the storage from 256Gb to 512Gb, improving the quality of the camera both via hardware as well as via software etc).

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Phones have reached a level where the're all so similar, it's basically just a pick a flagship and go about your day. Most, if not all, relevant apps are cross platform. All of them will have iphone fake depth of field or better (which was the main selling point on the iphone for my friends) going forward. Just make the batteries last longer and we're fine. Literally the only way my friends can claim superiority with their phone choice is whether a group text is blue or green. It's reached that level of pettiness.

Now, the NX2 would be a day one purchase for me. Make it happen, Samsung. Let me throw money at you! 

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Megapixel wars are over and I guess they won't reach razors 5 camera ridiculousness. Phone sizes are reaching tablet proportions and most people can't even hold and write with one hand any more. Body screen ratio is reaching it's limits too and most of the mid category phones are good enough for everything.

Phones are reaching saturation. What the industry needs is a visionary to find another business sector ready to grow. Smartwatches are not very popular and I'm sure people are not very happy about letting an always-on microphone in their homes with the excuse of turning on and off an oven or answering irrelevant questions. 1st world problem IMHO but who knows.

Anybody knows a sector ready to explode that hasn't been in the news lately like VR, AI or Autonomous vehicles?

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5 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

Apple better hurry up and innovate. Samsung smartphones are dying! In copying Apple by recognising the importance of software in driving the product forward they just can't seem to bring any new ideas to the table.

One of the issue with software is that provider like AT&T load their phone with crapware that are impossible to remove. I other word, they ruin the user experience. I had a lot of useless stuff on my phone, I had to root Droid to get rid of all this crap and It became significant faster without even talking about the saved space.

4 hours ago, hk908 said:

Phones have reached a level where the're all so similar, it's basically just a pick a flagship and go about your day. Most, if not all, relevant apps are cross platform.

Yeah, +1 about that. Phones are commodity, they more or less all do the same stuff and no amount of BS marketing, touchwizz and 3D Titanium X face recognition is going to change much. Now I simply buy the best phone for the buck and I'm done. I really couldn't care less about brand and models.

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6 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

Said Nokia :)

I remember back in the day seeing a little video about a guy who worked for Nokia whose job it was to travel the world and see what cool things people were doing with phones, and report those things back to Nokia as product and feature development ideas.

One of the most interesting ones he mentioned was that villagers in rural Africa were buying a mobile phone as a business for their village.  Obviously the other villagers would pay them to be able to call people on the phone, and the phone owner would make a percentage, but the big thing was that the phone acted like a bank.  In Africa there is a very rural-oriented culture where people go into the city to get a job for a few years, but are sending the money back to their families in their village.  So the city worker buys a pre-paid phone card, sends the card details to the phone owner in the village who then pays the family most of the value of the card, taking a percentage on top as a 'transaction fee'.

I thought this was brilliant for Nokia to be basically crowd-sourcing their R&D.  I wonder if Apple or Samsung are doing similarly, or if perhaps the innovation is simply in software not business models?  The most interesting thing about the smartphone, to me at least, was that it's basically a generic device, it has no specific interface, no specific display limitations, no specific processing limitations, etc.  It's a device that can be adapted to as many different styles of interface, display, or app design that app developers care to create.  It's kind of the antithesis of how old phones used to work (and how cameras currently work) where you choose a product and you get their hardware, their OS, and their apps all in one.

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Smartphone innovation will be up soon - only with dedicated sensor/lens components can you have a FF eqiv. 18mm/12mpx, 35mm/12mpx and a 50mm/48mpx for a 100mm lossless zoom in daylight. Triple lens smartphones are rumored to be unveiled as the next flagships from Apple, Samsung S10 and LG V40. You know that at least LG is putting some king of HDR video mode in and that they will all do 4K60p, with OIS this time, hopefully.

I never really got the appeal of the Note series - the big screen was it for a year or two, but these days big phones are everywhere and cheap.

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Saw this at the airport shop recently and thought it looked really interesting.

It's got terrible reviews though unfortunately as it only works with their own not stellar app and takes up your mic input as it, somewhat quaintly, uses audio pulses to drive it.

Conceptually from a control point of view it's really good with what you can actually do with the dials though.

A real pity and I hope they or someone else takes it on to make it BluetoothLE and work with other apps like Filmic Pro etc 



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I just got rid of my Samsung Note 8. I had the Note 2, Note 4 and the Note 8. Lots of trouble with the Note 4. Batteries mostly. I really never used the stylus much so why have a phone that big? And there is just so much crap ware that Samsung has now on their phones. And in the US they have the processors you can't hack. I hate that LoL. I enjoy hacking shit. I feel like it is really mine when I do!

So yeah I am done with Samsung. Never really thought the "normal" ones were worth having. Brought nothing to the table as they say. I have my Apple iPhone X mostly for camera, video apps, and Facetime for my children, grand children. Apple SE sits in a drawer. iPad Pro in my Camera Bag as a monitor, remote app thingy..

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