Incognito Failure: Galaxy S6 Posts Lackluster Sales in Japan, Even without Samsung Logo | BusinessKorea

Thursday, January 18, 2018

This green-tinted Galaxy S6 distributed by NTT docomo in Japan has no Samsung branding.
This green-tinted Galaxy S6 distributed by NTT docomo in Japan has no Samsung branding.
12 May 2015 - 12:30pm
Cho Jin-young

Samsung Electronics introduced the Galaxy S6 to the Japanese market without its logo, but the new model is exhibiting sluggish sales performance in the local smartphone market nevertheless.

According to Japanese market research firm BCN on May 11, the Galaxy S6 Edge ranked 26th in the Japanese smartphone weekly sales rankings from April 27 to May 3. The sale of the model appeared to be smooth at first, ranking 10th the first week of its launch. However, its ranking went down by 16 notches in just one week. The Galaxy S6 also suffered from a drop in the rankings from 17th in the first week of its release to 30th place in the following week.

The lackluster performance of the Galaxy S6 is noticeable only in the Japanese market. The Galaxy S6 series is in the top five of the U.K. smartphone sales rankings. The Galaxy S6 and Edge are in the runner-up and third spot each in German Amazon new smartphone sales rankings. The volume of advance sales of the Galaxy S6 were more than four times as high as that of the predecessor model in the Chinese market, which was rolled out a week earlier than Japan. Its pre-orders in India amounted to 40,000 units, far above the amount recorded by the Galaxy S5 (10,000 units). The amount of advance sales of the Galaxy S6 in the U.S. were twice as much as the number recorded by the Galaxy S5, according to overseas media outlets including Phone Arena.

Experts are saying that the reason for lackluster sales of the Galaxy S6 in the Japanese market lies in the so-called MacArthur Syndrome, which could be summarized as the West is believed to be superior to the East. The country was under U.S. occupation from 1945 to 1952. 

This phenomenon is said to be somewhat relevant to Apple's good performance in the Japanese market. The iPhone 6 is the number one smartphone model in Japan. A total of six models made by Apple are in the top 10.

In addition, the anti-Korean sentiment that Japanese people have is growing, as Japan-South Korea relations have recently gone sour, arising from disputes over history. That sentiment is considered to be another stumbling block to let Samsung soft-land its new model in the Japanese market.


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