Though Samsung has been launching a number of new models in its smartphone lineup, the structure of its lineup has mostly remained the same. Barring some region-specific models like the P series and On series, Samsung primarily categorizes its phones into three groups – Galaxy J series targeting the budget segment, Galaxy A series for midrange smartphones, and the Galaxy S/Note series for flagship devices.
According to an ET News report based on industry sources, Samsung is apparently considering a major reorganization of its budget and midrange smartphone lineups. It is reportedly planning to kill the Galaxy J series entirely and expand the range and scope of the Galaxy A series to cover some of the Galaxy J series price points.
Furthermore, the report states that Samsung is planning to introduce the Galaxy M lineup to replace the online-exclusive Galaxy On series devices. The Galaxy M models will target the budget segment, where the Chinese brands are most dominant. They will reportedly be priced very competitively so that Samsung can effectively compete against its Chinese rivals in key markets such as India, Latin America and in China itself where its market share has eroded to below one percent. It appears that Samsung would take a hit on profit margins in order to maintain its position in these key markets and even grow against the Chinese onslaught.
Significant changes to the Galaxy A series in store
The talk about significant changes to Samsung’s midrange smartphone lineup is nothing new. Recently, the company’s mobile chief, DJ Koh, has announced a new strategy for the company’s midrange devices to make them more competitive against the Chinese brands. Instead of trickling down features from its flagship devices, the company intends to develop innovative features specifically for the midrange models. Given Koh’s statements, some changes to the company’s Galaxy A series were expected, but whether those changes go as far as what is mentioned in this report remains to be seen.
Chinese brands have made a lot of progress in the emerging markets with their value-for-money offerings. While the growth in some markets didn’t necessarily come at the expense of Samsung, it was a lost opportunity for the company for sure. The intensity with which the Chinese brands compete in the market demands Samsung to take some drastic steps, and it might be planning to do exactly that with these reported lineup changes.