How did Samsung price the Note9? On trust
Chung Lyong Lee with the Samsung Galaxy Note9 at its launch event in Dubai on Wednesday.
Dubai - 51% of pre-orders for new flagship are for high-end 512GB model
Samsung may have raised a few eyebrows with its pricing for its new flagship. But there was one binding trait that led them to come to that figure.
"Before the launch, we had a lot of thought about the price. We had a lot of insights from our consumers, operators and our partners," Tarek Sabbagh, head of Samsung Gulf Electronics' IT and mobile division, told Khaleej Times. "And we trust them. We trust their feedback and relationship with users."
Sabbagh was speaking during the UAE launch of the Samsung Galaxy Note9 in Dubai on Wednesday. Chung Lyong Lee, president of Samsung Gulf Electronics, gave the keynote.
The company made key upgrades to the latest in the Note series, most notably in storage and power, plus on the S Pen, which can now act as a remote control to take pictures, go through presentations and others.
The base model comes with 128GB of storage, double that of its predecessor, the Note8, while the top-tier variant comes with 512GB.
Pair the latter with up to a 512GB microSD card, and you have in your hands a 1TB-ready device - more storage than most laptops out in the market today.
This storage capability, Sabbagh points out, has the ability to hold up to 93,000 images and up to 2,315 one-minute videos in 4K.
He says that this kind of massive storage will be important for users who store a lot of data on their smartphones - the simplest of users included.
"You'd always want to capture moments, your children for example," Sabbagh said. "Having this much of storage won't make you worry about running out of it or deleting anything."
Users who rely on their smartphones for work or business will also find this handy: with the big percentage of people in UAE that are on social media, they just don't take down notes: they also send out images and videos.
In the broader context of society, devices with top-end features make us ready for the next wave of technologies; future-proofing, as they say. "For example," Sabbagh says, "if tomorrow 5G will launch, not only will the operators benefit, but also everybody. It will be good for us especially when it comes to managing apps or benefitting from download speeds. New industries can also come up."
That said, the Galaxy Note9's price could well be justified.
Sabbagh has proof with numbers: Pre-orders for the Note9 in its first five days were 10 per cent higher compared to last year's Note8.
The somewhat pleasant surprise was that 51 per cent of those were for the 512GB model - despite its rather hefty price tag of Dh4,599.
The 128GB option is available for Dh3,699.
"The price might look a bit high but consumers, especially those attached to tech, will understand that this is good value for money because of the tech you have in your phone," Sabbagh says. "[Devices like these are] something they need more; if you get [features] in bits and pieces, it will cost more."
Tarek Sabbagh addressing the media during the UAE launch of the Samsung Galaxy Note9 in Dubai on Wednesday.