So you might know that right now, there’s growing tension between the U.S. and China. It’s probably not good news for U.S. companies, it’s almost definitely bad news for Chinese companies, but for Korean Samsung, it’s like the stars are lining up. I’m not talking a small victory here – I think this is Samsung’s big shot at world technological domination.
If we take a look at the top smartphone vendors globally, one thing stands out: that Huawei is huge. In the last five years, this company’s grown from 5% market share to 20. Theoretically speaking, that is impossible. This company was the single biggest threat to Samsung’s mobile operations, but perhaps not anymore.
The U.S. ban against Huawei during the Trump administration means that corporation can’t offer Google apps. They can’t build their own flagship chips, and now it has to suffer from a huge lack of trust from buyers all over the world. And without these things, I think it’s just a matter of time before Huawei returns to just serving the Chinese market. Some may argue that under the Biden administration, the ban against Huawei may be removed, but the real damage has already been done.
So theoretically speaking (again), if we took Huawei out of the picture, Samsung becomes an obvious number one in the market, leaving only Xiaomi as a realistic Android rival. Please don’t get me wrong – Xiaomi will also benefit if Huawei disappears. They’re already managing to scoop up current Huawei users who are looking for an alternative with these attractively-priced, globally-available devices. Plus, Xiaomi’s putting particular emphasis on the fact that their phones can run Google Play services, so as not to be confused with their other Chinese smartphone brands.
But you see – this is the issue that Xiaomi faces: a lot of the people who are unwilling to buy a Huawei phone because they don’t trust it might also not be willing to buy from other Chinese brands. The U.S. banned Chinese Huawei, they banned Chinese ZTEa few years before that, they literally just announced a ban for Chinese Tik Tok a few months ago. It’s not looking good for Chinese brands in general, especially in the smartphone market. And the big “surprise” is that the worse this China – U.S. relationship gets, the better Samsung’s business does.
Going back to the list of big names among smartphone market, pretty much every one of Samsung’s main competitors: Oppo, Vivo, Realme … – they’re all Chinese. But Samsung dodged that bullet by being a company that is Korean and one that is publicly withdrawn from manufacturing in China, instead moving to India and Vietnam. And guess what – those two just so happen to be regions that the U.S. is trying to strengthen its relations with.
So, Samsung has kind of just found themselves in a position where people want their phones more. And they started responding to it. This new Galaxy S20 Fan Edition was literally launched with the very purpose of capitalizing on increased appetite for Samsung.
Oh, and there’s more. You might be aware that Apple is very soon planning to launch their first ever 5G iPhones. Now generally when Apple does this, when they introduce a feature on their phones that has actually been around for some time, they do it in a big way. Apple is often the company to catapult relatively niche features into the mainstream. They did it with voice assistance, they did it with fingerprint scanners, they’re about to do it with 5G. And the reason this helps Samsung is that, believe it or not, they’re one of the few companies that builds 5G infrastructure.
Now, there’s a pretty reasonable chance that you had no idea Samsung did this. Because the main three companies are Huawei, Nokia and Ericsson. But Samsung is fourth – and I think they’re about to climb.
See, with this political conflict, China is separating from the West. I mean, Huawei has physically been ripped out of a lot of Europe’s 5G infrastructure contracts, and it’s looking like China might attack back. In the exact same way that the West has banned the use of Huawei, it’s very possible that China will also ban the use of European companies like Ericsson and Nokia. And would you to believe it, that leaves Samsung as the only neutral party who could potentially supply both sides of the conflict, and I could bet my bottom dollar they’re gonna try.
Literally a couple of weeks ago, Samsung signed a five-year deal with Verizon in the U.S. to build 5G infrastructure for them. They’re already wrestling in, basically offering themselves as a “China-free” alternative to Huawei 5G. They’ve just recently dropped over 20 billions dollar into 5G and AI, and something as well on their way into planning their 6G infrastructure to come in 2028.
And, see, the better Samsung’s networking business does, the better their smartphones business does. If Samsung starts building really close ties with Verizon and other carriers, then that puts Samsung’s hardware right in the limelight for U.S. customers, because carriers are the ones selling the phones in the U.S.
And that is the end of part one.