Samsung Galaxy Note. First Look
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MWC 2012. Galaxy Note: New Strategy
Samsung initially placed Note in a category of its own between smartphones and tablets. A symbiosis was complemented by S-Pen, which is a digital stylus allowing drawing. It is no ordinary stylus as it discerns different pressing power and can draw lines of different length among other things. Unexpectedly Samsung stumbled upon a lucrative niche. Consumers started missing stylus driven devices and were ready for their second coming. I would like to remind that styluses appeared first in early 1990s and one of the more famous devices was the first PDA ever - Apple Newton. Samsung got the unexpected target right and then decided to change the positioning of the Note category. If at first they wanted to create a link between smartphones and tablets now they pay more attention to S-Pen.
By launching a 10.1" tablet with S-Pen Samsung is clearly planning to take it from there. In future the company will come up with more S-Pen products predominantly tablets. Samsung is also actively investing in the development of new apps for the stylus. It is a new ecosystem, which can help them reap rewards in future tablets. It largely depends on how the market reacts to an S-Pen tablet. It is positioned both as a business and entertainment device. Kids can draw there easily and it will be popular among painters and graphic designers. In fact Samsung returns the stylus to the market. From 2007 when Apple iPhone hit the shelves everybody wanted touchscreens with finger controls only and he stylus looked old-fashioned. The example of Galaxy Note proves that ditching the stylus was not wise. We still use pens and draw, while fingers are not the best tool for that.
As we know Samsung strategy it is possible to forecast a range of devices (not only phones and tablets) with such an input type. This is not merely a portfolio of products, but a new trend. It became successful courtesy of the combination of technology and marketing. HTC could have been the first with their HTC Flyer, but the positioning of the tablet was wrong and they blew it. Now this segment is firmly associated with Galaxy Note and other Samsung models to follow suit.
The main direction here is not only new devices, but improving handwriting recognition and new software for one hand input ( a software update for Galaxy Note).
It is too early to say if the entire category becomes popular or we will forget about it in two years. If it stays for long we will speak about the new market segment. It all depends on sales of the new Samsung tablet.
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Published 28 February 2012
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