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Galaxy S22 sales decline in South Korea over artificial throttling issue


Last updated: April 4th, 2022 at 14:49 UTC+02:00

It was first reported about a month ago that Samsung was artificially slowing down some of its devices, including the new Galaxy S22 series. It was a software, Samsung’s GOS (Games Optimization Service), that throttled both the CPU and GPU performance rather aggressively.

GOS wasn’t just throttling games. It restricted performance for over 10,000 apps, including but not limited to TikTok, Netflix and Instagram. What it didn’t throttle were benchmarking apps, thereby providing performance figures that weren’t representative of the actual performance. This controversy seems to have caused the Galaxy S22 sales to take a hit in South Korea.

South Korean customers don’t like buying phones with GOS

Customers didn’t like what Samsung was doing here for two reasons. Firstly, it wasn’t made clear to them that GOS was throttling the device’s performance, and that it wasn’t possible to disable GOS even if users wanted to. Samsung did address this later on by releasing an update that makes it possible to disable GOS.

However, it seems that customers in South Korea aren’t too happy about this situation. Local media reports point to the sagging sales of Samsung’s latest flagships. This has made Samsung’s carrier partners sharply raise subsidies for the Galaxy S22 phones in order to sell more units.

KT and LG Uplus have confirmed that they have increased subsidies for the Galaxy S22 and S22+ by up to 500,000 won ($410). The carriers have previously raised their subsidies by the same amount for the Galaxy S22 Ultra. The subsidies on offer now are more than triple from the 150,000 won ($124) offered previously.

Industry watchers believe that Samsung and its carrier partners have decided to increase the amount of subsidies on offer to overcome the decline in sales of the Galaxy S22 series. An official at a local mobile carrier is quoted as saying that “There is a view that the GOS issue adversely affects the sales of the S22.”

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