What’s this about the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5? These devices aren’t expected for at least a year. It’s the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Z Flip 4 that are due to be launched soon, not these. Rest assured, this is not a typo.
A report out of South Korea claims that Samsung isn’t feeling too confident about the sales prospects of its 2023 foldable lineup. The company expects the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Z Flip 5 sales to be lower than that of their predecessors.
Global challenges may dent demand for its 2023 foldables
Previous reports have suggested that Samsung believes the upcoming Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Z Flip 4 will perform very well in the market. The company expects to ship 15 million units of the new foldable smartphones that it will unveil next month. This is double the target that it set for the outgoing Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Z Flip 3 models last year.
However, Samsung has reportedly reduced its shipment target significantly for the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Z Flip 5. It expects to ship 10 million units of both devices combined once the devices are released in the second half of 2023. The company expects 2 million units shipped for the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and 8 million for the Galaxy Z Flip 5.
The report also mentions that both 2023 foldables will use the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset that will be made on TSMC’s 4nm process. Samsung continues to use Snapdragon chips only for its foldables and this trend is expected to continue next year. It’s also claimed that the Galaxy Z Fold 5 rear camera setup will include Samsung’s ISOCELL GN3 50-megapixel image sensor.
It’s unusual for Samsung to set such a low target for its next-generation premium devices as the expectation with every new generation is that shipments will be up considerably compared to last year. Industry analysts believe Samsung’s reduced shipment target may have something to do with the uncertainty in demand for smartphones.
The increase in raw material prices due to the conflict in Ukraine, increasing concerns about stagflation, and a possible re-emergence of COVID19 may further reduce demand for premium phones.
Samsung is likely being conservative with its production plans so that it doesn’t end up with a lot of unsold inventory. A recent report highlighted that Samsung is stuck with 50 million unsold phones. It has already cut production of existing models by 30 million units to deal with this situation. Going forward, the company may continue to take a conservative approach to effectively deal with the global challenges.
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