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[Update 2: 800,000 worldwide] Galaxy Gear sold 50,000 units in South Korea alone

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Last updated: November 19th, 2013 at 11:16 UTC+02:00

Update: Oops, looks like the 50,000 sales figure was for South Korea only, which means the Galaxy Gear hasn’t performed as bad as previously thought, though sales numbers in Samsung’s home country do not necessarily mean the sales have been good in other markets.

Update 2: Well, looks like Samsung is doing some damage control after the initial rumor of the Galaxy Gear selling only 50,000 units worldwide, as a Samsung exec has said that 800,000 Galaxy Gears have been sold globally in two months. Not a bad figure if it’s correct, and we might just see much higher sales when the Gear becomes compatible with more devices and has its price tag reduced.

You were probably expecting this would happen, and it has: the Galaxy Gear (our review is here) can be labelled as a flop product, as the world’s first true smartwatch has sold only around 50,000 units worldwide in South Korea, since its launch in late September. That’s an abysmal sales figure even for a new product category, especially when it comes from one of the world’s most resourceful and well-known company, and factors like the high asking price and compatibility with only two (very costly) devices at launch likely contributed to the poor acceptance by consumers.

Samsung EVP David Eun believes people were expecting the Gear to be a “big red ripe tomato” when it’s simply a “small green tomato” – a work in progress that he believes consumers should be lauding the company for as it was the first to get a smartwatch out to market.

When you’re dealing with innovation and when you’re dealing with startups, I always make the analogy to small green tomatoes. What we’re dealing with is small green tomatoes and what we want to do is take care of them and work with them so they can become big red ripe tomatoes.

And what you want to be sure is that you don’t pluck the green tomato too early and you want to make sure you don’t criticize a small green tomato for not being a big red ripe tomato.

It’s a 1.0 device. I like it a ton. It’s 1.0. Personally, I don’t think enough people gave us the credit for innovating and getting it out there. Not easily done to integrate all this functionality into one thing. But I would also say over time this thing is going to get big and red.

Well, it’s commendable that he feels the need to defend his company, but unfortunately the market doesn’t work way, and certainly not how the mind of the consumer works. Samsung has been continually improving the Gear – an update recently added the option to display notifications for any and every app on the watch – but it will take much more before people accept the Galaxy Gear as something that actually has some value, especially when it comes with a price tag of mid-range smartphones.

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