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Samsung Fails to Improve Phone Sales: Stock Continues Slide

Samsung Galaxy 7

Shares of Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (KRX:005930) fell to a 10-month low overseas after the company announced disappointing phone sales.

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The stock dropped 3.2% to 1,104,000 won on Monday morning. That’s the lowest price seen since Oct. 28. Overall, the company’s stock price has dropped 17% this year and is on track for its third annual year-over-year decline.

Samsung premiered the Galaxy Note 5 and the S6 Edge Plus last week. However, those new devices were not enough to stave off the decline in the company’s share price.

Samsung’s Competitors

The mobile device manufacturer has adopted an aggressive posture to compete with rival Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Thus far, those efforts have fallen flat as the company reports quarter after quarter of losses.

Samsung also competes with Chinese producers Huawei Technologies Co. and Xiaomi Corp. The company has offered wraparound devices with a 5.7-inch screen in an effort to gain market share over companies manufacturing inexpensive devices that use the Android operating system.

“Last week’s unpacking event was very disappointing,” said Yoo Eui Hyung, an analyst with Dongbu Securities Co. in Seoul. “We should now admit that new smartphones are no longer a thing that can reverse the profit decline.”

Misjudged Market Demands

Samsung (KRX:005930) unveiled the release dates for its new devices earlier than planned in an effort to get ahead of Apple’s release of the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus – both due next month.

The Galaxy Note 5 is meant to appeal to a niche audience. Among its more popular features is that it includes a stylus that allow users to annotate images and take notes on the screen. It also allows people to sign PDF documents directly on the screen, facilitating the use of paperless, yet legally binding, contracts. Finally the Galaxy Note 5 also allows offers a “rolling screen capture” that allows users to capture an entire page, even if it doesn’t fit on the screen.

The Galaxy S6 Edge Plus gives users a screen that’s curved on both sides, allowing for quick access to friends and apps.

Both phones offer an improved camera and live streaming of video that you’re capturing – allowing people to use online resources such as Meerkat and Periscope to broadcast their own live events. They also share similar design elements: glass backs and aluminum frames.

Samsung’s earnings have fallen for five quarters in a row. The company also misjudged market demand for its S6 devices, causing analysts to overestimate earnings for the second quarter.

To keep products moving, Samsung recently had to cut prices for devices that are just 4 months old.

Samsung (KRX:005930) is also under fire for imitating Apple just a little too closely. The company’s Gear S2 looks strikingly similar to the Apple Watch. Samsung has been embroiled in legal battles with Apple regarding patent and design infringement.

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