Samsung’s mobile chief remains in role despite falling smartphone sales

Samsung Galaxy Alpha front top

Despite the relatively poor sales performance of its flagship Galaxy S5 handset, and recent financial figures reporting its poorest mobile profit in three years, Samsung’s mobile chief JK Shin remains in his role following a management shuffle announced Monday.

Reports last week suggested that Shin was about to be replaced by BK Yoon, the head of Samsung’s consumer electronics unit, but he, too, stays in place.

Samsung’s latest annual reshuffle saw far fewer changes than had been expected, revealing the company’s confidence in the current set-up as it attempts to reverse its recent decline in the smartphone market and push profits, which in Q3 fell company-wide by 60 percent, back up.

Samsung’s mobile division has been struggling after its Galaxy S5 phone failed to grab the attention of consumers in the way that previous iterations of the device have managed. The Wall Street Journal said recently Samsung has sold 40 percent fewer S5 devices than the S4, with strong competition coming from the likes of the LG G3, the HTC One M8, and, more recently, Apple’s two new iPhone 6 handsets.


Following its poor Q3 results, the Korean tech firm vowed to take a close look at its smartphone strategy in a bid to put the business back on track. Senior Samsung executive Kim Hyun-joon said at the end October the company planned to concentrate more on a range of price tiers rather than simply focusing on high-end handsets.

Further details about its new approach were offered by Robert Yi, the company’s head of investor relations, who said Samsung was moving to reduce the number of smartphone types by up to 30 percent in an effort to reduce costs, though such a move may not come as a surprise to those aware of Samsung’s habit over the last few years of pushing out a vast number of variants of its most popular phones.

With Shin remaining as Samsung’s mobile chief, the tech firm heads into 2015 with an experienced player steering the ship, though we’ll have to wait to find out if he has the ideas and strategic vision to beat down the competition and restore Samsung’s mobile business to its former growth trajectory.

[Source: WSJ]