updated 06:50 am EDT, Wed March 28, 2012
Samsung reaches new Galaxy Note 5.3 milestone
Samsung has announced that it has now shipped 5 million units of its 5.3-inch Galaxy Note 'phablet.' Although not representing actual sell-through figures to end-users, the company has reached this production milestone in five months. It was only in early March that Samsung revealed that it had actually sold over 2 million units of its phone and tablet hybrid, suggesting that either that demand for the device is accelerating rapidly, or that channel inventories may be fully loaded.
Samsung credits the popularity of the device to the quality of its 5.3-inch Super AMOLED HD display and the supplied S-Pen and supporting pen-based apps. The company explained that the Galaxy Note 5.3 has achieved strong sales results in France, Belgium, Italy and the Netherlands. It also added that it is now the number one smartphone vendor in China, France and Spain and has reached a 67 percent share of its home market of South Korea.
Although the Galaxy Note 5.3 has achieved undoubtedly strong sales results for Samsung, it admitted recently that its tablet sales were not as strong as expected. The unexpected popularity of the Galaxy Note 5.3 (which might otherwise be a strictly niche device) along with the lack luster sales of its Galaxy Tab line, has prompted the company to release a Galaxy Note 10.1 along with an S-Pen and a specialized suite of apps to take advantage of it.
In a crowded Android tablet market, Samsung's decision to team with Wacom on the S-Pen has given it genuine product differentiation, that also helps to set it apart from Apple's tablet offerings. Although Apple, under the late Steve Jobs, indicated that pen input for tablet devices was something that should be relegated to the past, the market reaction suggests that the stylus has enduring appeal for a number of users. Although Apple has not made a stylus available for the iPad, a thriving third-party stylus market has also emerged for the iPad -- though unlike the S-Pen on the Galaxy Note range, they are not purpose designed and don't offer the pressure sensitivity and fine control offered by the S-Pen.