Customers at a Samsung store in Kolkata, India. Photo: Avishek Das/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Samsung said Monday it plans to debut five new devices at its Unpacked event next month.
Why it matters: Samsung remains the main rival to Apple in the high end of the mobile market, but the pandemic may leave fewer people with either the budget or the appetite for a fancy new mobile device.
- The Korean electronics giant is expected to introduce several flavors of the Galaxy Note 20, along with a new foldable smartphone and new bean-shaped in-ear wireless earbuds, according to various reports and leaked photos.
- In a blog post, Samsung mobile unit president T.M. Roh confirmed plans to launch five devices and pledged that the company is investing more in research and development despite COVID-19.
Between the lines: Roh acknowledges the market has changed, but plays up the value of mobile devices during the pandemic, pointing to technology's role in distance learning, entertainment and fitness at home.
"I consider this new era as the ‘Next Normal’ and technology — especially mobile technology — has a critical role in it. As leaders of the tech industry, we have a special responsibility — and now a true sense of urgency — to help society continue to move forward."— T.M. Roh
Our thought bubble: Technology is playing a critical part in keeping society moving during the pandemic. But in many developed markets, users' focus right now is on tablets and PCs more than smartphones — a big shift from the last 15 years, when mobile technology has had the most transformative effects.
Yes, but: For billions of people around the world — and a not insignificant number of Americans — the smartphone remains the only computing device they own. Most of them won't be able to afford the high-end devices Samsung is expected to talk about next month.