Samsung is expected to add wireless charging, a desirable feature seen on its Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9 devices, to cheaper smartphones in its Galaxy A and even Galaxy J series. Wireless charging is an established technology found in many devices already; but the vast majority of phones that provide it are expensive. Samsung’s decision is part of its push to make its cheaper phones stand out in a very crowded market.
A further problem with wireless charging, and why it’s not usually considered for cheaper phones, is that you need to purchase a wireless charging pad separately. Prices for these products vary, but official equipment from the manufacturer can be an expensive accessory. To change this, Samsung is apparently producing a new wireless charging pad that will cost the equivalent of $20 — cheap for an official product.
According to ETNews, where the news has been published, the wireless charger pad will be announced in October. Although it’s not mentioned, this may coincide with Samsung’s Galaxy A announcement event on October 11. The new device, likely to be the 2018 Galaxy A9, may include wireless charging as a feature. Samsung’s Galaxy A phones are cheaper than the range-topping Galaxy S and Galaxy Note phones, which can cost $1,000 or more.
Samsung has included wireless charging on its phones for three years, and recently Samsung Mobile CEO DJ Koh said the company was changing focus from high-end devices to its midrange phones. Koh even went so far as to say cheaper phones might see new features before the more expensive ones. Including wireless charging on the Galaxy A series, and selling a cheaper wireless charger, may only be the beginning.
Increasing the value of cheaper phones will help Samsung regain market share in several key markets, where it can’t rely on the Galaxy S and Galaxy Note phones to be big sellers. For example in China between April and June of this year, Samsung didn’t feature in the top five manufacturers by market share at all, according to Counterpoint Research, and at the beginning of 2018 the company only managed a one-percent share. Apple has 8 percent of the market, while Huawei leads with 26 percent.
Samsung will announce a new Galaxy A series phone on October 11 during an online event.