Galaxy S2 US Release Delay: Not So Appealing to Samsung?

The Samsung Galaxy S2 or S II is probably the device that we’ve written most about over the last few months, with the iPhone 5 being its nearest contender for articles. One of the queries still surrounding the Galaxy S2 though is when it will actually see a U.S. release and this is a subject that continues to intrigue.

A few weeks ago we published a Galaxy S2 US release roundup in which we included all the rumors and speculation so far and carrier news. Stateside it will have alternative names, the Within for Sprint, Function for Verizon and the Attain for AT&T and we know from readers’ comments to our previous posts, just how many of you are waiting eagerly, although not as patiently as previously. Recently we told how the Galaxy S2 was in danger of missing the boat if Samsung didn’t fulfill a release soon, especially with phones like the HTC EVO 3D making an appearance and the Motorola Droid Bionic out soon. We then wrote about how both HTC and Motorola were benefitting from the non-appearance so far of the Galaxy S2 in the US and also the iPhone 5, not due until fall, but still no news has come about a US release.

It’s all very odd as Samsung surely cannot fail to have noticed how desired this handset is in the US especially as amazing sales records for other regions have just been released. There’s also been news of a Canada release soon for the Galaxy S2 but still the US waits. A few days ago OSM’s Tim Ollason wrote about how sales of the Galaxy S2 were likely to soar following a US release, referring to earlier stories of Samsung sales targets of 10 million for the S2 and also asking if Samsung would be able to keep up with the demand when it finally arrives. It does seem very bizarre then that Samsung and the US carriers seem to be dragging their feet but now an article over on The Chosunilbo may shed some light on this.

It refers to the fact that although sales of 3 million have now been reached for the Galaxy S2, half of those sales were in Korea. As domestic sales accounts for half of sales so far, it seems to contradict Samsung’s claims of the Galaxy S2 being a global market handset. A Samsung executive said, “We expect the domestic sales proportion to dwindle over time while global sales will rise,” while later adding, “Negotiations with American telecom companies have dragged on.” However other insiders point to the fact that Samsung makes more profits from domestic sales than from those made overseas. Could this be the reason then, why the Galaxy S2 has still not made it to sale in the US, two and a half months on from the release in Korea?

The Chosenilbo points to the competition from HTC and Motorola in the US as one of the reasons why Samsung hasn’t hurried to release it there, competition which wasn’t nearly so tough last year with the release of the original Galaxy S. It’s worth noting that when the Galaxy S launched last year it was released in the US only one month later. How different this time around!

We’d like to hear your thoughts on this. Can the non-appearance of the US Galaxy S2 so far, really be due to the fact that Samsung makes more profits from its domestic market? Is this unrealistic given that the US market would be so huge and profit is still profit even if the margins are not so high? Are you still waiting for the Galaxy S2? We’re really interested to hear your views on this so let us have your comments.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_O5ONTSWLLBCAQVKKOOGZG3TUUA Broad

    I am definitely waiting for this handset. As things stand now with all the rumours about Galaxy S2 Plus, Galaxy S3 etc, I will be patient till Christmas season to see what is really true. That will be 6 months waiting since my contract expired. I want a phone I can live with for the next 2 years.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1634310131 Michael O’Keefe

    It looks like it’s down to the Samsung Galaxy S2 and the Motorola Droid Bionic for me. I would prefer the SGS2, but the Verizon version (Function) needs to have 4G LTE for me to consider it. I’m really having difficulty waiting, especially since my wife and her family all got new phones (Droid 2’s, which they may update to Droid 3’s on the 14th). I’m currently stuck with a horrific Palm Treo 700w (blech) I got secondhand just to get grandfathered into an unlimited data plan. Fortunately, I still have my fantastic but aging Nokia N900 on a month to month contract with Simple Mobile. I don’t think I can wait more than a month, maybe 2, though.

    • http://twitter.com/jeremyjenk jeremy jenkins

      I feel your pain, have a Samsung Saga that I got off ebay in order to get grandfathered in. Can’t wait till I get my android phone.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1634310131 Michael O’Keefe

    It looks like it’s down to the Samsung Galaxy S2 and the Motorola Droid Bionic for me. I would prefer the SGS2, but the Verizon version (Function) needs to have 4G LTE for me to consider it. I’m really having difficulty waiting, especially since my wife and her family all got new phones (Droid 2’s, which they may update to Droid 3’s on the 14th). I’m currently stuck with a horrific Palm Treo 700w (blech) I got secondhand just to get grandfathered into an unlimited data plan. Fortunately, I still have my fantastic but aging Nokia N900 on a month to month contract with Simple Mobile. I don’t think I can wait more than a month, maybe 2, though.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1634310131 Michael O’Keefe

    It looks like it’s down to the Samsung Galaxy S2 and the Motorola Droid Bionic for me. I would prefer the SGS2, but the Verizon version (Function) needs to have 4G LTE for me to consider it. I’m really having difficulty waiting, especially since my wife and her family all got new phones (Droid 2’s, which they may update to Droid 3’s on the 14th). I’m currently stuck with a horrific Palm Treo 700w (blech) I got secondhand just to get grandfathered into an unlimited data plan. Fortunately, I still have my fantastic but aging Nokia N900 on a month to month contract with Simple Mobile. I don’t think I can wait more than a month, maybe 2, though.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1634310131 Michael O’Keefe

    It looks like it’s down to the Samsung Galaxy S2 and the Motorola Droid Bionic for me. I would prefer the SGS2, but the Verizon version (Function) needs to have 4G LTE for me to consider it. I’m really having difficulty waiting, especially since my wife and her family all got new phones (Droid 2’s, which they may update to Droid 3’s on the 14th). I’m currently stuck with a horrific Palm Treo 700w (blech) I got secondhand just to get grandfathered into an unlimited data plan. Fortunately, I still have my fantastic but aging Nokia N900 on a month to month contract with Simple Mobile. I don’t think I can wait more than a month, maybe 2, though.

  • Jay Knecht

    I’ve been anxiously awaiting this for over a month now too. I’m trying to drag my failing OG Droid on until then. I think your analysis that it is profit related for Samsung is wrong though. I think Samsung’s profits would be MUCH higher if they were able to get it released before the Evo 3D, the Bionic, Droid 3, and so on. That is, if they were the first dual-core LTE Android on Verizon, they would’ve gotten the Lion’s share. There will now be much more competition when it is released. The quote from the Samsung exec says it all: “Negotiations with American telecom companies have dragged on.” Although I don’t have anything to back it up, I suspect it is the fault of the US carriers.

  • Anonymous

    My take on it is this…Since Apple is pushing the courts to order the Galaxy S2 to be pulled from shelves, Samsung is reluctant to start pushing this out to US if it will end up having to halt sales. Imagine if they started this process with all American carriers at that volume, and the courts rule in Apple’s favor, thus halting all sales. That could really hurt them. If they haven’t started the process yet, they stand to lose less if this court order goes through.
    I’m waiting, although, I don’t know how long I can hold out. I’ve needed a new phone for 6 months.

  • Anonymous

    Perhaps AT&T does not want to upset Apple and preempt the iPhone 5. Perhaps Jobs asked them to wait or else.

  • http://twitter.com/krkbomb Kevin Kelley

    Yep, I’m still waiting, but I don’t know for how much longer. This phone still represents my best option.

    I don’t buy any of the rumors floating around, including this. I think it comes down to one idiotic decision: Samsung is rebranding the phone for each US carrier. Now they have to make sure each rebranded version is ready AND make sure they are all fairly equal to avoid pissing anyone off. It’s the idiotic system in American cellular giving carriers far too much control.

    The contracts are what matter, not the phones, not the sales. If people are looking for the SII, they can get one from any carrier, but if people are looking for the Within/Function/Attain/etc. because their friend had one and it looked awesome, they’ll assume they have to go to one particular carrier to get it. It’s the basic assumption of American stupidity at work.

  • Anonymous

    I think Samsung is foolish for ignoring the growing concerns of their consumers (& media) and risk being a miserable failure in the US if they don’t communicate or release this phone almost immediately.

    OSM has done a great job here of following the anticipation of the Galaxy SII and they express my concerns as a current Samsung consumer, I was very eager to get my hands on their next Superphone, was that is. I’m fed up. Samsung hasn’t made me feel like a valuable owner in their products by refusing to feel as though they need to comment about the delays.

    Samsung is risking not having the latest and greatest phone in the US market by 3rd Quarter. Motorola and HTC will both have comparable phones by then and maybe even Nokia and Sony. Also for those of us who despise not being able to get our hands on the latest Android OS why not wait at this point for the 3rd generation Google Nexus phone? If BGR’s sources are correct the phone will rock a faster processor in the TI 1.5Ghz and will possess most everything the GSII has to offer and more including Ice Cream Sandwhich (Android 4.0). Why not wait a little bit more for a phone from Google who will push the latest Android OS as soon as it’s released rather than the SII which will almost immediately be defeated in specs and force a 6+ month wait for Samsung to slap on their TouchWiz UI which no matter how clever still slows down the Android experience Google has worked to hard for their fans to enjoy.

    I would not be surprised to hear that Samsung does not have carrier agreements in the US for the new phone and that’s the real holdup. Nonetheless, I don’t care any longer. I don’t think the patent infringement fight would prevent Samsung from moving forward, in fact I think it should provide a sense of urgency to release the phone prior to a court ruling.

    How many people out there are willing to wait for this phone when Apple is about to release the iPhone 5 and throw a dart and hit a competitor which a simiilar phone? It’s time to send Samsung a message along with the other carriers that when you play games with your loyal consumers you’re going to lose any loyalty we have afforded, everyone has their limits.

  • Jerry Harris

    It’d either be this or the Droid Bionic for me, presuming both are 4G. But if the Bionic comes out first, I’ll get that and won’t wait. I bet a LOT of other people would do the same, so Samsung stands to lose a LOT of customers if it doesn’t come out here within a VERY short time of the release of the Bionic…!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=63900900 Sean Eppel

    The wait is unbelievable for this phone! This is my top choice of new phone on Sprint, but if I have to wait till Sept, then I’ll (unfortunately) get the Photon 4g of EVO3D instead, since my current phone is barely working.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=63900900 Sean Eppel

    The wait is unbelievable for this phone! This is my top choice of new phone on Sprint, but if I have to wait till Sept, then I’ll (unfortunately) get the Photon 4g of EVO3D instead, since my current phone is barely working.

  • http://twitter.com/i1pro Jose Ignacio

    I hate that Apple always sues competitors they can’t beat technically. They always claim they invented everything but the reality is that they all look like Windows ’98 with a screen full of icons. Apple be brave and meet your competitors at the market, and not in court.

    Counting the days till this phone makes it to AT&T — I was hoping for July. My iPhone 3Gs is half dead, if it does not come soon, I will either go with HTC and t-Mobile or wait to see what the new iPhone (4G) is all about before pulling the trigger. If I have to wait a month or so for the iPhone, I will but not longer. This seems like the best alternative…

    • J. Brian Bobiak

      Exactly. it’s like one bottle maker sueing another bottle maker for making a round, mouth-sized opening. Poor losers always cry foul. Get over it, Apple!

  • J. Brian Bobiak

    I’m in the same boat as everyone else here. Timing is everything this month for me. My company buys all new phones as a group. We each can have what ever is available at the time that we all upgrade. Key word”available”. I feel as though there is some truth in all the rumors. Negotiations dragging on….the longer the talks continue, the better for the carriers as the other new phones reach the market. Even if the phone was to be released as is rumored by the end of July 2011, the service providers would likely not let us know because they’d want to depleat the existing stocks as best as they can. Announcing the date for such a widely anticipated device is bound to kill sales until the release date. I’m very tempted to spring for the entire $700 and just buy the unlocked version.

  • J. Brian Bobiak

    I’m in the same boat as everyone else here. Timing is everything this month for me. My company buys all new phones as a group. We each can have what ever is available at the time that we all upgrade. Key word”available”. I feel as though there is some truth in all the rumors. Negotiations dragging on….the longer the talks continue, the better for the carriers as the other new phones reach the market. Even if the phone was to be released as is rumored by the end of July 2011, the service providers would likely not let us know because they’d want to depleat the existing stocks as best as they can. Announcing the date for such a widely anticipated device is bound to kill sales until the release date. I’m very tempted to spring for the entire $700 and just buy the unlocked version.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1434173155 David Brenner

    I’m waiting to compare the Hercules with the Nexus 4G/Prime – hopefully the release delays will be over by then.

  • Kevin Wu

    It’s almost always true that anything sold in the US is cheaper than selling at other people’s domestic markets. We have the most buying power thus everyone is always trying to sell things to us for cheap.

  • http://www.facebook.com/alexgunther Alexander Gunther

    It could definitely be possible that the Apple v. Samsung lawsuit has had an impact on some level.

  • http://www.facebook.com/alexgunther Alexander Gunther

    And it wouldn’t take too much digging around to confirm or deny that. The Freedom of Information Act is your best friend. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sam-Elsamman/680406094 Sam Elsamman

    I think Samsung knows that they are the ones best poised to compete with Apple in the long run. The iPhone 5 will be out in the fall. They must win this round (iPhone 5 vs Galaxy S2) to solidify their position as the market leader. If you were Samsung, what do you do to compete? Do you try and get out front only to be steam-rolled by the Apple PR machine come fall or do you launch simultaneously and try to suck some of the wind out of their sales or do you find the perfect timing that will make sure you are at optimal buzz level when your contender steps into the ring? Sure making a few extra bucks on domestic sales and (hopefully) beefing up inventory makes sense but I think this is a must-win for Samsung.

  • Joshua D

    This really comes down to the carriers not wanting existing sales to stop as soon as it is announced that the S2 is coming out 7/31 or whenever. I think this talk about the carriers thinking that there are phones from Moto and HTC that match up better with the US networks is absolute nonsense. The carrier want to make as much money as possible from every deal they make. They know the S2 will sell like gangbusters so they are not worried about releasing it later. The question is, is that better for Samsung’s bottom line?

  • http://profiles.google.com/reirab Ross Binkley

    I borrowed a friend’s old Palm Pre to get grandfathered in on Verizon’s unlimited data plan. I would love to get a GS II with LTE, but if it doesn’t have LTE or if they delay long after the Bionic’s release, I’ll be getting the Bionic instead. If they can release it on time and it has LTE, then the Sammy phone would probably be my choice, though, due to Samsung’s awesome screens. Bionic is definitely a close second, though.