52 Percent of Smartphones sold in Africa are Samsung

Robert Ngeru, Samsung East Africa COO

Samsung today launched the galaxy Note 3 in Kenya. This follows launches both globally in Berlin and regionally in South Africa. The Galaxy Note 3 is Samsung’s niche device that was set in 2011 with the first Galaxy Note, a segment that would then grow to become successful with 60 million in Galaxy Note sales.

The Galaxy Note 3 is the third phablet in a segment that is both premium and has tablets in it, the Galaxy Note 10.1, Galaxy Note 8 and the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 edition that was launched on the same date with the Note 3.

Samsung positions the Galaxy Note 3 as a premium device and will be accompanied by the Galaxy Gear as the complimentary device to extend the functionality of the Galaxy Note 3. The user is able to pick or reject calls on the Galaxy gear without needing to pull out the smartphone out of the pocket, a feature that would stand well among drivers, and people in meetings.

The Gear also stands out as a fashion accessory. Samsung has priced the Galaxy Note 3 at Kshs 79,999 ($940) while the Galaxy Gear has not been priced as Samsung consults with the Communications Commission of Kenya over the device category that will in turn affect the tax category of the Gear.

Robert Ngeru, Samsung Electronics East Africa COO says that in Africa, the fastest growing mobile Markets, Samsung is the leader in smartphone shipments as quoted from IDC with figures of 52%. “Mobile is a 1.5 billion dollar industry and competition is the order of the day, Samsung listens to the consumers and is always innovating to bring more useful technology, that’s what differentiates us from the competition,” adds Robert.

Recent data from CCK has it that most consumers in Kenya access the internet first on a mobile phone, and with the fast growth of smartphones, the same will reflect in the first exposure to computing.

More people expected to purchase tablets than PCs by 2014, and this growth is expected to shoot up with the roll-out of LTE starting later in the year. According to Mr. Ngeru, people wont use the tablet as their main computing device yet as they want to have their data stored in the device they are working on. Understandably so as the internet connectivity is quite far behind global leaders who have LTE rolled out countrywide.

Faster internet speeds and availability will make the tablet which is generally cheaper a better proposition for the Kenyan market like in regions where this is already rolled out and as by next year there will be more tablets sold than PCs. With LTE roll-out, even the cloud computing proposition will make more sense. Samsung hinted strongly of great developments towards that starting December and promised greater things to come starting then.

Samsung also plans to roll out a trade-in program where customers will receive future guaranteed buy-back on the Galaxy Note 3 and an extended 25% discount on the next flagship model. This will not be available in Kenya only but also in South Africa, Nigeria, Angola.

Manoj Changarampatt, Samsung Mobile East Africa Business Leader announced that Samsung will be increasing the Accidental Damage from Handling cover (ADH) from two years to four. This is an Africa only cover that allows users to get a free screen replacement should their in-warranty screen break accidentally.

The same also covers liquid damage. Samsung Galaxy Note and tablet users will get free content from Samsung content and free data bundles on purchase from local carriers making the proposition even better in the long run.