Samsung #1 in Global 5G smartphone sales with 6.7 Million Galaxy 5G Devices in 2019
Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. said that it shipped more than 6.7 million Galaxy 5G smartphones globally in 2019, giving consumers the ability to experience next-generation speed and performance. As of November 2019, Samsung accounted for 53.9% of the global 5G smartphone market and led the industry in offering consumers five Galaxy 5G devices globally, including the Galaxy S10 5G, Note10 5G and Note10+ 5G, as well as the recently launched Galaxy A90 5G and Galaxy Fold 5G.
The 6.7 million in Samsung 5G smartphone sales eclipses the 4 million target the firm set itself, though as its main Android competitor (Huawei) is being stifled by political friction, it is hardly surprising Samsung has stormed into the lead. Note also that Apple has not announced a 5G smartphone and probably will not do so till late 2020. In the absence of main competitors, Samsung is maintaining its leadership position in the 5G segment as well as 4G-LTE.
“Consumers can’t wait to experience 5G and we are proud to offer a diverse portfolio of devices that deliver the best 5G experience possible,” said TM Roh, President and Head of Research and Development at IT & Mobile Communications Division, Samsung Electronics. “For Samsung, 2020 will be the year of Galaxy 5G and we are excited to bring 5G to even more device categories and introduce people to mobile experiences they never thought possible,” he added.
The Galaxy Tab S6 5G, which will be available in Korea in the first quarter of 2020, will be the world’s first 5G tablet bringing ultra-fast speeds together with the power and performance of the Galaxy Tab series. With its premium display, multimedia capabilities and now, 5G, the Galaxy Tab S6 5G offers high-quality video conferencing, as well as a premium experience for watching live and pre-recorded video streams or playing cloud and online games with friends.
“5G smartphones contributed to 1% of global smartphone sales in 2019. However, 2020 will be the breakout year, with 5G smartphones poised to grow 1,687% with contribution rising to 18% of the total global smartphone sales volumes,” said Neil Shah, VP of Research at Counterpoint Research. “Samsung has been one of the leading players catalyzing the 5G market development in 2019 with end-to-end 5G offerings from 3GPP standards contribution, semiconductors, mobile devices to networking equipment. With tremendous 5G growth opportunities on the horizon, Samsung, over the next decade, is in a great position to capitalize by further investing and building on the early lead and momentum, ” Shah added.
Sidebar: Qualcomm or Samsung 5G silicon in future 5G devices?
It has become widely accepted that the latest Qualcomm chipset features in the majority of flagship smartphone devices throughout the year. Only two smartphone makers – Samsung and Huawei – have said they were making their own 5G chipsets which would be integrated into their 5G smartphones. Will Samsung use both its own silicon as well as Qualcomm’s in future 5G devices?
Over the next few months Qualcomm will begin shipping both the Snapdragon 865 and Snapdragon 765 chipsets. The Snapdragon 865 is more powerful, though 5G is on a separate modem, potentially decreasing the power efficiency of devices. The Snapdragon 765 has 5G connectivity integrated, though is notably less powerful. Whichever chipset OEMs elect for, there will be a trade-off to stomach.
Looking at the rumours spreading through the press, it does appear many of the smartphone manufacturers are electing for the Snapdragon 865 and a paired 5G modem in the device. Samsung’s Galaxy S11, Sony Xperia 2 and the Google Pixel 5 are only some of the launches suggested to feature the Snapdragon 865 as opposed to its 5G integrated sister chipset.
With Mobile World Congress 2020 in Barcelona just two months away, there is amble opportunity for new 5G devices to be launched prior, during and just after the event. It will be interesting to see what 5G silicon is used in them.
Incomplete (or non existent) 5G Standards:
Of critical importance is that there are currently no standards for 5G implementations. The closest is IMT 2020.SPECS which won’t be completed and approved till November 23-24, 2020 ITU-R SG5 meeting or later. That spec will likely not include the 5G packet core (5GC), network slicing, virtualization, automation/orchestration/provisioning, network management, security, etc which will either be proprietary or use 4G LTE infrastructure. It also might not include signaling, ultra low latency or ultra high reliability, depending on completion of those items in 3GPP Release 16 and its disposition to ITU-R WP 5D.
For nearly a decade, Samsung has worked to bring 5G from the lab to real life by working closely with carrier partners, regulatory groups and government agencies to develop the best 5G experience possible. As a leading contributor to industry groups like 3GPP and O-RAN Alliance, Samsung is committed to an open, collaborative approach to networking, which has helped to accelerate delivery of 5G to consumers and businesses. Over the past year, in addition to launching a robust 5G device portfolio, the company reached several historical milestones including providing network equipment for the world’s first 5G commercial service in Korea as well as working closely with global carrier partners to expand 5G networks and introduce 5G experiences and use cases.
In the year ahead, Samsung says they will continue to lead the market in 5G innovation by introducing new advancements that will improve the speed, performance and security of Galaxy 5G devices even further. In 2020, these advancements will give even more people access to new mobile experiences that change the way they watch and interact with movies, TV and sports, play games and talk with friends and family.
For more information about Samsung Galaxy 5G devices please visit news.samsung.com/us/galaxy-5g/, www.samsungmobilepress.com or www.samsung.com/galaxy.
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Samsung introduces cheaper Galaxy S10 Lite, Galaxy Note10 Lite
Samsung has launched new smartphones that follow up on its Galaxy S and Note series, but at a more accessible price. The Galaxy S10 Lite and Galaxy Note10 Lite both come with an S Pen, the latest camera features and an immersive display but cost from EUR 649 and EUR 599 respectively. The phones will be on display at CES 2020 on 1-10 January, with the Galaxy S10 Lite available in Prism White, Prism Black and Prism Blue and the Galaxy Note10 Lite in Aura Glow, Aura Black and Aura Red.
The Galaxy S10 Lite sports a main Wide-angle camera with a 123=degree angle lens and Ultra Wide and Macro cameras, combined with the new Super Steady OIS (optical image stabilization). The Note10 also has three cameras, but with less specifications.
Both devices have a 6.7 inch screen. The Galaxy S10 Lite is equipped with Super AMOLED Plus and the Galaxy Note10 Lite with a Super AMOLD edge-to-edge Infinity-O display. The 4,500 mAh can be charged by a fast charger. Both phones will also come with Samsung’s ecosystem of apps and services, including Bixby, Samsung Pay and Samsung Health, as well as defense-grade security platform Samsung Knox.
Samsung plans Galaxy Unpacked event for 11 February
Samsung Electronics announced that it’s next Galaxy Unpacked event will take place on 11 February. The company said it will unveil “new, innovative devices that will shape the next decade of mobile experiences” at the event in San Francisco.
The event is likely to feature the successor to Samsung’s Galaxy S10, as the flagship S series is usually updated in February. Samsung may also present its next foldable phone.
Samsung says the Galaxy Tab S6 5G is the world’s first 5G tablet (if you don’t count the hybrid Fold 5G), and plans to ship it in South Korea in the first quarter of 2020.
For whatever reason, Samsung doesn’t seem to be putting much of a marketing push behind the 5G Tab, despite the fact that it’s ultra-thin and quite powerful. My guess is that the unit’s odd release timing — well after the Tab S6 debuted — and sub-6GHz-only 5G support might make it a Korea-exclusive model, with a proper followup adding support for the millimeter wave towers found in some U.S. cities. Notably, none of the demo units appeared to actually be connected to a 5G network, so they couldn’t show off the feature that makes them special.
The other “5G” section of Samsung’s booth focused on new car technologies, including a 12-antenna 5G telematics unit for cars, a QLED screen that mounts on the back of a car to provide cellular-shared warnings, and a demo of cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) communications. While C-V2X will eventually enable autonomous cars to sense pedestrians and traffic lights, it’s just beginning to get the necessary regulatory approvals to roll out in select countries, so a huge multi-screened demo of its potential to eliminate crosswalk fatalities felt somewhat overwrought.
As we walked through the 5G car section of the booth, Samsung Networks VP Alok Shah filled me in on the company’s infrastructure efforts, noting that it’s seeing growth in both U.S. and international 5G millimeter wave deployments. Local approvals of millimeter wave hardware continue to bear fruit — slowly — so unannounced U.S. cities will be coming on board with millimeter wave this year. Countries with robust sub-6GHz 5G will begin deploying millimeter wave to aid in population-dense cities, as well.
Additionally, rural 5G will start to take off thanks to new 5G consumer premises equipment (CPEs) that will give customers in far-flung areas access to wireless broadband. While carriers will determine the speeds, Shah noted that the regulatory minimum threshold for “broadband” is now 25Mbps, so carriers will make the determination between serving many customers with the bare minimum or serving fewer with faster speeds. Regardless, he said, the current service level in many rural areas is “0,” which will make 5G a game-changer.
Most companies didn’t have as much to say about 5G as Samsung, regardless of how strong their competitive positions seemed last year. A paradigmatic example was LG, which spent much of the past year promoting and selling actual 5G phones across multiple territories. LG restricted 5G to a tiny spot in its sprawling, overcrowded booth, showing off one phone: the already released V50S, a spec-bumped follow-up to the company’s first 5G phone, which was set up to demo 3D dancers that could be placed on a flat surface using AR.
Nothing about the demo screamed “5G.” Nor did anything about the phone. If it hadn’t been for a “5G begins with LG” sign and a promotional video touting Sprint’s 5G network, there would have been no reason to even suspect the device was 5G capable — or that LG cared.
We’ve covered a handful of other 5G announcements in separate articles, including the joint Qualcomm-Lenovo announcement of Yoga 5G, previously known as Project Limitless, which is being billed as the world’s first 5G PC, and will sell for $1,499 and up in the spring. HP and Dell also announced 5G-optional laptops that will ship this summer, but neither company provided prices for their 5G options.
Apart from the impending release of 5G tablets and PCs, the 5G news at CES has focused on more mundane hardware, including Linksys, Netgear, and D-Link hybrid 5G modems and Wi-Fi routers; the announcement of cheaper 5G phones and chipsets; and the use of 5G to facilitate network TV broadcasts.
In short, 5G is — as predicted last year — headed everywhere and into virtually everything in 2020. But a lot of that growth is happening quietly, in less sexy types of consumer and infrastructure hardware, and presently without the sort of huge industry-wide marketing push that will kick off the 5G upgrade supercycles analysts have been predicting.
With somewhere in the neighborhood of 170,000 attendees, and guaranteed media attention for major announcements, CES 2020 could have been a great stage for companies such as Samsung to make big 5G news. Instead, we’ll have to see whether February events such as Unpacked and Mobile World Congress deliver the sort of genuine 5G excitement that CES lacked.
Samsung’s 5G-based telecom equipment to be installed in BMW’s EV
A 5G-based telematics control unit (TCU) jointly developed by Samsung Electronics and its affiliate Harman will be equipped in BMW’s electric vehicles (EV).
At the 2020 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) held at the Las Vegas Convention Center in the U.S., Samsung Electronics said on Wednesday that its 5G TCU will be installed in BMW’s all-electric vehicle iNEXT, which is scheduled to be mass produced from 2021. The South Korean tech giant’s 2016 acquisition of Harman, a global leader in car audio and automotive supplies, is creating a synergistic effect in the automotive sector. Automotive is one of Samsung’s key growth drivers that Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong has been pushing forward.
Samsung has showcased its 5G-supported TCU technology at the CES 2020. The 5G-enabled TCU is capable of sending large chunks of data to vehicles in real time and provides a variety of connected car services. While driving, drivers will be able to download high-resolution videos and maps in real time and have a video conference.
‘Harman is seeing a 10% increase in its automotive revenue every year,’ said Park Jong-hwan, vice president and chief of Samsung Electronics’ automotive division. ‘Harman will be a global leader in 5G TCU.’
Following winning an order for supplying digital cockpits to Chinese EV manufacturer Beijing Electric Vehicle (BJEV) in April last year, Harman is expanding its automotive business sector while supplying car audio to Hyundai’s Genesis GV80 to be released this month.
AT&T and Verizon said to have new 5G phones in 2020:
Chris Penrose, AT&T’s senior vice president of Advanced Mobility and Entertainment Solutions, told CNET on Wednesday at CES that the company plans to have 15 5G phones this year.
Most of the phones will be capable of taking advantage of AT&T’s low-band 5G spectrum as well as its higher-frequency millimeter wave. Additional devices like laptops, tablets and hotspots will also be available, but no exact number of products were given.
The low-band 850Mhz network, which AT&T calls simply “5G,” went live in December and is currently active in 19 markets. Penrose says that the company plans to expand this network to cover 200 million people “by the summer.”
As with T-Mobile’s similar low-band network, speeds on 5G are comparable to 4G LTE (which AT&T has confusingly branded as 5GE) though it covers wider areas and can reach inside buildings.
The millimeter-wave network, which AT&T calls “5G Plus,” has been live since late 2018 and most recently expanded to parts of 35 cities, but has thus far limited access only to developers. As with Verizon’s millimeter-wave network, 5G Plus offers significantly faster speeds than low-band 5G, but its coverage is often severely limited to a handful of outdoor locations in the cities where it’s live.
Penrose equates AT&T’s 5G strategy to a chocolate chip cookie, with the cookie representing the larger low-band 5G footprint and the chips equating to the assortment of millimeter-wave cities “sprinkled in across the country.”
New phones, Penrose says, will enable consumers to have access to the “entire cookie” and tap into AT&T’s full 5G network.
While it is unclear when the next batch of 5G phones will arrive, rumors point to Samsung’s next Galaxy S line being among the first phones to support both flavors of 5G. Samsung announced Saturday that it will be hosting an Unpacked event, the method it traditionally uses to launch major new mobile products, on Feb. 11 in San Francisco.
Ronan Dunne, head of the Verizon Consumer Group, told CNET on Tuesday that his company plans to have 20 5G devices in 2020 with some being priced under $600 later this year.
Penrose would not go into specifics on pricing for AT&T’s 5G devices but did say that the company will be “competitive in the marketplace.”
Qualcomm, the world’s top supplier of mobile phone chips, said smartphone prices in India would continue to come down as handset brands drive volumes through economies of scale and expects the Indian smartphone market to grow at sub-10% levels to reach 160 million units in calendar 2020.Rajen Vagadia, president, Qualcomm India, said smartphones powered by the company’s 600-series chips that were “priced above ?15,000 are now down to around ?10,000”, adding that “the drop in handset prices in India is the fastest” the company has seen yet.Vagadia said that despite the stress on the Indian telecom sector, the handset market has grown last year in India and is slated to grow just below 10% in calendar 2020 too. “Economies of scale are helping brands that are driving volumes, which is helping the market,” he said.People are also buying costlier phones in India, which offers a good opportunity for handset brands to monetise beyond the hardware.
“Handset brands and carriers will look at offering services outside the phone to see how to monetise. At some stage, services will drive revenues,” he said.The Qualcomm executive also said mass availability of 5G smartphones in India will hinge on how rapidly China scales its own 5G networks and handset ecosystem. “We are dependent on China for economies of scale…as they drive 5G, it will be the natural way for smartphones to come to India.”Handset brands such as Vivo, Realme, Oppo, and Xiaomi may bring their 5G smartphones to India this year. Manu Jain, Xiaomi’s international VP and managing director (India), said the smartphone maker is working with vendor partners and carriers to bring 5G smartphones to India soon. He, however, declined to give a time frame.Research firm TechArc expects 15-18 models to be introduced in India this year in premium segment.
24 January 2020 The Economic Times of India
Great post on 5G smartphones. I like what you wrote about cheap 5G phones which I have been finding it difficult to buy. Thanks again for the wonderful post.
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