Samsung Electronics’ Galaxy Z Fold 4 foldable smartphones
Samsung’s latest foldable smartphones have garnered around 50,000 pre-bookings within the first 12 hours of the announcement, a record for the company as it looks to scale its foldable business 1.5 times over what they did last year, a senior company executive told ET.
“Since yesterday afternoon when the pre-bookings opened till midnight, we had about 50,000 pre-bookings for the Fold 4 and the Flip 4. The initial response has been fantastic and the count is going up as we speak,” said Raju Pullan, senior vice president at MX business, sales at Samsung.
The primary audience for the Galaxy Z Fold 4 are the tech savvy consumers who buy it for the flaunt value and also want the best in class performance and productivity, while the Flip 4 is for people looking to express themselves through the Flex Cam. Samsung calls the camera module that can shoot at multiple angles due to the foldable hinge as the flex cam, Pullan added.
“We are also very focused on creating partnerships whether at the device level (Qualcomm, Google, for example), or with creators to help storytelling,” said Aditya Babbar, senior director, head, product and marketing, Samsung India.
“For Flip, 40% of consumers are female while 60% of them are male. A large part of the audience on which we have built the franchise on, in the last couple of years, are the millennial consumers,” Pullan said, commenting on the target audience of the premium foldable smartphone lineup.
Foldable smartphones have been growing substantially for Samsung, the only brand in India offering the new form factor, while Oppo, Xiaomi and Huawei have launched their versions exclusively in China.
“Since 2018, we have grown almost 16 times in the overall foldables space. It’s becoming a sizable chunk of our overall smartphone strategy in India. We are also making huge investments in expanding the experience at retail and various touch points,” Pullan added.
Samsung plans to scale up the retail presence of its foldable offerings to 10,000 stores offline, from 5,000 stores last year in India.
“At Samsung we ensure that the customer experience is seamless across touchpoints. So whether it is our campaigns to create awareness (about the models and features), or the build up to communicate revelance or during the conversion stage where the purchase actually happens, we put the customer experience first,” Babbar added.
“In our journey to make foldables mainstream, we are also leveraging various platforms like upgrade programs, and Samsung Finance Plus where new to credit consumers can also acquire the product,” Pullan said.
He added that on pre-booking the foldable phone, consumers will get a Galaxy Watch 4 Classic smartwatch, at Rs 2,999.
Pullan said the foldables are manufactured by leveraging Samsung’s global manufacturing units, indicating that the phones are imported from other countries, but the company is looking to leverage its local supply chain in the near future to start its foldables manufacturing in India as well.