Lee Young-hee, president of the global marketing center at Samsung Electronics, hinted that the tech giant could hold the upcoming Galaxy Upacked event for the first time in Seoul. (Samsung Electronics)
Samsung Electronics may hold its unpacking event for its new foldable phones in Seoul for the first time this summer, a Samsung president said on Thursday.
“South Korea is an important market and Seoul is a meaningful place,” Lee Young-hee, president of the global marketing center for Samsung Electronics’ Device eXperience business, told reporters after attending Samsung Ho-Am Prize awards ceremony in Seoul.
The tech giant usually holds two highly publicized launch events for its Galaxy devices, one to unveil its flagship Galaxy S phones in February, and another for its Z foldable phones in August.
In the past years, the events were held outside of Korea, in the United States or Europe. But this year, the tech giant has reportedly been considering holding the event on its home turf of South Korea for the first time.
The company held an unpacking event in San Francisco in February for its latest Galaxy S23 smartphone lineup – which includes the S23, the S23 Ultra and S23 Plus -- and its Galaxy Book 3 laptops.
Samsung has not yet announced the venue and date of the launch event for its next-generation foldable smartphones -- the Galaxy Z Flip 5, Galaxy Z Fold 5 -- and Galaxy Watch 6. But industry sources predict the event is highly likely to take place earlier than usual on July 26, at Coex in southern Seoul
The official announcement will likely be made “sometime next week,” a Samsung official told The Korea Herald on Friday.
Samsung has been leading the foldable smartphone market since it rolled out its first foldable device, the Galaxy Fold, in 2019. It has since expanded its lineup to the Galaxy Z Flip series. According to Display Supply Chain Consultants, the tech giant’s share of the foldable market stood at 45 percent in the January-March period.
“Samsung not only pioneered the folding smartphone category, but also made foldables mainstream, with the product category growing in popularity globally,” Roh Tae-moon, president of the tech giant's Mobile eXperience business, said in a press conference held during his recent visit to Vietnam.
Despite the stagnant smartphone market, global shipments of foldable phones continue to grow. Market research firm International Data Corporation expected this year’s global foldable phone shipments to jump 50 percent on-year to 22 million units, while total smartphone shipments are forecast to decrease by 1.1 percent on-year from 1.19 billion units.
Competition is also heating up in the foldable phone market, which has emerged as a future growth driver in the smartphone industry. Chinese smartphone makers have also followed Samsung’s footsteps by making an entry into the market. Meanwhile, US tech giant Google is set to release its first foldable phone, the Pixel Fold, this month.
By Jie Ye-eun (email@example.com)