Lots of smartphone owners have opted to stick with their existing smartphone rather than buy the new breed of insanely expensive flagships such as the iPhone X. Sales for the iPhone X have reportedly been so slow that Apple reportedly slashed production in half for the first part of 2018. Word has now surfaced that Apple's main competitor, Samsung, is also feeling the heat when it comes to soft demand for its new flagship Galaxy S9 device that was announced at MWC 2018.
Analyst Jeff Johnson from Arthur Wood Research has cited sources in the supply chain who claim that pre-orders for Samsung's Galaxy S9 smartphone are down 50% compared to the number of pre-orders for the Galaxy S8 launched last year. Johnson wrote consumers are "upgrading at a much slower pace as features are falling on deaf ears."
Johnson also wrote that "Smartphone sales are starting to decline at an accelerating rate." Many will look at that statement and feel like smartphone makers such as Apple and Samsung have done this to themselves. Upgrades compared to previous generations are slight and the price is massively higher than many consumers are willing to spend.
The good news for consumers is that if demand for these devices continues to be soft, Apple and Samsung along with other smartphone makers and carriers will have no choice but to slash prices to move inventory through the use of more enticing promotional offers. Samsung is already scrambling on the component side to find new customers for the OLED screens it rushed to build for Apple now that Apple has reduced production of the iPhone X.
Pricing details for the Galaxy S9 and the larger Galaxy S9+ show that this smartphone will push pricing over $700 ($719.99 at AT&T) for the smaller device and to nearly $850 ($839.99 at AT&T) for the larger device.