Samsung unveils mass market wearables plan

 Samsung unveils mass market wearables plan

Samsung’s UK mobile boss Conor Pierce (pictured) has told Mobile that the manufacturer is targeting its existing smartphone customer base as it seeks to make its latest wearable device, Gear S2, a ‘mass market’ product.

According to Pierce, the brand has high hopes for its new ‘affordable and available’ Gear S2 device. Samsung’s UK focus is very much on the Gear S2 and the phablet edge+ device in the run-up to Christmas, with no plans to bring the Note 4 to market as of yet, and no new flagship anticipated until early 2016.  

Speaking exclusively to Mobile, Pierce said: ‘We need to position the Gear S2 as an independent proposition. Don’t get me wrong, it makes perfect sense that you would consider buying an S6 and complementing it with a Gear S2. But it’s not just about our flagship devices and adding value to it, it’s also about engaging with the base.

‘In the UK alone there are also eight and a half million Android-ready devices that are compatible with the Gear S2. Of that eight and a half million, six million are Samsung devices, so there is a massive sea of opportunity.

‘Many may be aware, but I don’t know whether they are considering and would be willing to purchase. So it’s up to us now to engage with that base and help them understand that this is a massive value add and makes their life easier and more convenient.’

Samsung’s mobile VP revealed that it would be taking the opposite approach to fierce rivals Apple with its wearable product. The Californian manufacturer pursued a direct first strategy with its Apple Watch, while Samsung is looking to range it in a number of partner stores, as Pierce explained: ‘You know Samsung, we don’t do things small, but what we are beginning to do a whole lot more is listen to our partners and how we can work with them to add value to their proposition. It’s not about engaging with one or two channels – of course we’ll have it through online and through our Samsung stores – but that’s a small channel compared with what we want to build.

‘Yes, some of our competitors have decided to pursue a very focused and niche strategy, but we want to do the opposite. We want to build at scale and we want to make it affordable and available to the mass market. And we also have that base of eight and a half million to aim at. That base is obviously purchasing and considering purchasing devices across many different channels – we don’t want to force them into one in particular.

‘We’re really proud of what we’re doing and we’re also going to make it one of the most affordable and accessible devices. And when I say accessible, I mean accessible, unlike some players in the market, we’ll be working with all our partners. This is all about Samsung building an ecosystem outside of the partners that we trust and value. It’s about engaging with our partners and seeing how we can work together to build more value into their proposition.’


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