At its recent trade event in Birmingham, Samsung showcased a wide range of products which in the words of Andy Griffiths, Samsung vice-president of consumer electronics, were to reflect “the solutions to the money which is still available in the market. Preparing this showcase we wanted to indicate to the trade what is still possible out there, and how we can survive this recession together.”
Samsung’s strategy in recession centres on “high value innovation supported by comprehensive marketing, such as the campaign promoting LED television, which began in April. Samsung considers itself a brand leader for the industry and we feel that it is our role to show the wider public how exciting the consumer electronics could be now. And not only CE, as also in white goods we have exciting innovations, such as our three-door fridge/freezer,” said Andy.
LED TV and more
The most significant product development in the Samsung portfolio is, no doubt, the new generation of LED TV. Andy Griffiths described it as “a whole new species of televisions – in terms of its functions, design and picture quality. It takes us into a new TV category, beside LCD and Plasma. It offers Internet interactivity which transforms the style of TV usage – from passive to active. It is also very eco-friendly, as its energy consumption is reduced by 40% in comparison to traditional TV models.”
The new 8000, 720 and 6000 Series build upon the previous Samsung LED TV models and feature Mega Dynamic Contras ratios producing darker blacks and crisper colours, an Ultra Slim depth of 30mm and the Motion Plus swift motion technology with 200Hz frame rate on the 8000 models. The USP of the series is also extensive networking and entertainment potential. Through the ‘Internet@TV’ feature consumers can access content from such sites as Yahoo!, Flickr or YouTube.
Among other ‘firsts’ presented at the show were the wall mountable Blu-ray player, the BD-P4600, the Blu-ray 2.1 channel home theatre system and Blu-ray 2.1 channel home cinema system which delivers top class picture and powerful audio performance.
White goods arena
The showcase also demonstrated Samsung’s extensive investment in the domestic appliances sector which reflected the company’s confidence that the sector is about to turn a corner. Andy Griffiths predicts: “White goods were first to go into recession but they will also be first to come out. In the meantime we extend the portfolio of our white goods, that has met with great acceptance from the trade, which proves that Samsung’s brand ‘travels’ beautifully.”
Andrew Jones, product manger for home appliances at Samsung, explained Samsung’s strategy in this area: “Our white good strategy was to fill the gaps, since we didn’t have many DA ranges so far. For example we have 6kg laundry but we also introduced a 9kg option. In refrigeration we have just introduced single door refrigeration, in addition to fridge/freezers and side-by-sides, and we started building up our cooking range. The next step will be to redevelop our key messages; for example how we extend the range using the Dual Cook technology. Refrigeration is a key market for us and further developments will focus on energy consumption.”
Andrew has also commented on the most important product developments in white goods: “Our induction hob demonstrates Samsung’s strength in technology development. We created this product from scratch and equipped it with a feature which is relatively unique on the market – a open zone area. It gives consumers the flexibility to use different size and shape of pans. On the refrigeration side – a single door fridge and freezer – is a totally new product for us, focusing on a food centre-type of approach where the products can be sold as a pair – which gives the customer great capacity – or separately”.
Also new from Samsung was a steam oven, and the company is also planning to launch its first dishwasher shortly.
New floorcare products included an upright version of Silencio (with a sensor which adjusts the strength of the suction to the level of dirt) and the Fido model for pet owners, in cylinder and upright versions.
To its refrigeration range Samsung has also added a three door fridge/freezer with a sophisticated LCD panel on which users can record their favourite recipes and which can even house their photo album.