Samsung and Xiaomi Start a Flip Phone Fight!

Samsung and Xiaomi Start a Flip Phone Fight!

Two Asian smartphone giants go retro to dominate the global smartphone market.

In less than a decade, Chinese smartphone makers have achieved competitiveness with a diverse lineup of models offered at lower prices. But now, looks like Samsung is breaking the Chinese rhythm by increasing focus on premium phones with a difference, rather than increasing market share with lower-end models.

Just at the start of August, Samsung announced two new phones with folding screens – the Galaxy Z Flip 3 5G and the Galaxy Z Fold 3 5G – each looking way more premium than what Motorola offered during the first flip phone era back in the mid-1990s…


Flip Phone

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 5G


The Galaxy Z Flip3 5G is a small pocketable square device that cleverly opens up to reveal a 6.7-inch screen inside, while the Galaxy Z Fold 3 5G is a skinny phone that opens like a book to reveal a tablet-sized 7.6-inch screen. But with pricing for the former starting at a whisker below RM4k, while the latter is closer to seven grand, they’re not affordable, style-focused devices like what the previous generation Motorola flip was back in the day!

Fortunately, Samsung‘s head of mobile communications Roh Tae-moon recently said the tech giant would be “expanding its portfolio of foldables, so this groundbreaking category is more accessible to everyone.”

But as the Korean wrestle with an effective pricing strategy for its fancy new foldies, the red horde continues its relentless charge…

Globally, China’s smartphone manufacturers are rapidly increasing their share. For the first time in recent months, Xiaomi took up the second-largest share of the global market with 17 per cent in the second quarter, for now still behind Samsung with 19 per cent, according to market tracker Canalys. Meanwhile, Apple’s share stood at 14 per cent, while China’s Oppo and Vivo followed, each with 10 percent.

Xiaomi’s shipments of phones surged 83 per cent from the second quarter of last year, whereas Samsung’s shipments grew 15 per cent and Apple just 1 per cent. The Chinese firm aims to become the world’s largest smartphone maker by 2023 (in terms of annual shipment volumes). It already offers a wide range of models, from low-end phones to premium foldables, at much more affordable prices than its rivals…

Furthermore, Xiaomi and other Chinese brands have benefitted in their domestic market from U.S. sanctions on Huawei. Xiaomi has also extended its global reach by increasing store presences around the world with over 1,000 shops in more than 100 countries, and overseas earnings account for almost half of the company’s total earnings.


Now, it also has a flip phone on the market – Xiaomi Mi Mix Fold. In fact, it just broke cover earlier in April, but many industry watchers feel that it’s actually more of a direct competitor to the previous generation Galaxy Z Fold 2. But even so, with a much lower price than the current third-generation Samsung flagship, the Chinese flip’s late entry into Malaysia will still see it becoming a significant contender even to the newer generation Samsung foldie.

But whichever camp you’re set to put your money on, just know you this: The flip phone war is just heating up now as there are already rumours of Xiaomi blending the design of the Samsung Z Flip with that of the Note 9T smartphone from its sub-brand Redmi, for a comeback round! So, stay tuned for even more action real soon…

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