By JIRAPAN BOONNOON
SAMSUNG Electronics will begin selling its Galaxy Note 8 phone in Thailand tomorrow [Friday], with pre-orders double those for the predecessor Note 7 model.
The South Korean electronics giant yesterday said the pre-orders for the new model were 50 per cent higher than for the Samsung S8 phone.
Wichai Pornpratang, corporate vice president of IT and mobile communications at Samsung Electronics, said the company on September 15 announced the global launch schedule, with the Thai launch date for sales announced yesterday. The company this month began taking pre-orders for the Note 8, until Sunday, with these customers picking up their phones from tomorrow.
Wichai said Samsung Korea had sold via pre-orders 850,000 units from September 7-14.
“In Thailand, we have been very successful with pre-orders for the Note 8 and reached the highest number of pre-orders that we’ve ever seen in the country,” Wichai said. “Aside from the pre-ordered phones beings available from [tomorrow], walk-in customers can also buy the phone.”
He said the Note 8 features innovations such as biometric technology, a 6.3-inch Super Amoled Infinity display, a dual-sensor camera with two 12-megapixel rear cameras and an S Pen that “enables users to communicate in more personal ways”.
Prices for the model start at Bt33,900.
“I think that the some features of Note 8 will become the global standard for new smartphones in the near future, such as the dual camera and the Infinity display,” said Wichai. He said the new model “will support the lifestyles of Thai smartphone users”, with research indicating that Thais spend almost four hours accessing information, entertainment and other things on the Internet via their phones. Banking applications fall into the top three categories for usage, enabling people to do their banking online via the phone.
Neilsen Thailand says that, on average, Thais spend almost four hours a day on their smartphones, with 75 minutes spent on communications, 67 minutes on using applications, 45 minutes on entertainment, 24 minutes for browsing and 18 minutes on device management.
Strategy Report says bigger phones with screens in the range of 6 to 6.99 inches are projected to dominate the market, with 42.5 million units likely to be sold in Asia Pacific by the end of 2017. This is estimated to increase to 9.8 million users, or 98.8 per cent, by the end of 2022 – for growth of 126 per cent.
The country has 90.94 million mobile cellular subscriptions, or around 133 per cent of the population. There are 57.6 million active mobile phone users, with a penetration rate of 84 per cent. Thailand has 42 million social media users.