Last week I asked if you would buy Samsung's newest smartphone, which goes on sale later this month. With a large enough sample size -- 1,700 responses so far -- time is come to share the results. Seventy percent say they will buy Galaxy S4, although not all immediately. Just 20 percent answer flat-out "No".
I should qualify the headline: "You likely will buy Samsung Galaxy S4, if you're not American. Over here, more people are bugaboo about iPhone. Apple had 38.9 percent smartphone subscriber share in February compared to 21.3 percent for its South Korean rival, according to comScore. Elsewhere, Samsung rules, selling more general handsets and smartphones than any other manufacturer, according to Gartner. (Woe to damn provincial Americans!)
Polls like this reflect potential trends and shouldn't be treated as applying to a whole category of buyers. We don't qualify respondents and presume the majority are BetaNews readers -- or at least gadget geeks. Something else, and this applies to buying polls everywhere: What people say they will do isn't often what they do. The poll captures sentiments about buying intentions.
Continuing, 18 percent of poll respondents say they will preorder (some international carriers take them already), while 28 percent plan to buy as soon as the S4 is available. "I have already ordered my S4", BetaNews reader Lawrence Jolly says. "I currently use an S2 that I am very happy with, happy enough to stay with if I am honest however, it is on a contract and the 2 years is up. I am also very keen to go to 4g when that becomes available, something I cannot do on my S2".
Jolly is "very happy with Android, the S2 was my first Android phone. If the S4 serves me half as well I will be delighted. In truth there is not a lot between all the high-end phones, I like the choice I get with Android though".
That's a sentiment Glenn Hughes shares. "I think we have reached the 'good enough' point, at least with current technology. I'm much more interested in low-cost phones on pre-paid carriers like Virgin than I am in gimmicky new features. This will probably hold true until the next truly revolutionary new feature-set comes along, which I'm guessing, will be either a big leap in voice interface technology, or some other form of intuitive human interface, along the lines of Google's project glass, or some such".
"Meh" is a reaction too commonly expressed around the InterWebs about iPhone 5 and Galaxy S4 (hey, just read BetaNews comments). Both are supposed to be flagship, cutting-edge smartphones that the geek crowd looks at with some disdain. The original iPhone was a remarkable advance n handset user interfaces, unmatched by anything that followed. Hughes isn't alone putting pre-paid before features. According to NPD, all the growth in U.S. smartphone sales is pre-paid.
Long-time BetaNews reader extremely_well is "getting two Galaxy S4s. One for the wife -- I'll take her S2 to replace my aging Nexus One -- and one to ship overseas. I'll probably get the Galaxy Note 3 for myself in 6 months, too. With T-Mobile's new plans...it really makes sense to own top-end models; they lose only $25-$30 of their value monthly".
"I'm waiting another year for the S5", John Crane shares. "My 2-year contract will be up and AT&T will be in the mood to deal. I hope" Larry Brown "just bought a Note 2 and I am very happy with it".