Samsung Appoints Roh Tae Moon as New Head of its Smartphone Division as Race for 5G Technology Intensifies

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Samsung appoints new mobile chief to stay ahead of competition from Huawei
Samsung appoints new mobile chief to stay ahead of competition from Huawei

South Korean phonemaker, Samsung, has appointed a new leader to head the smartphone arm of its operations. 51-year old Roh Tae-moon, who was formerly the mobile development lead, will now be working to ensure that Samsung stays ahead of its competition, most notably Apple and Huawei Technologies.

By the end of 2019, Samsung had 21% global smartphone market share, down from 22% in Q1. Huawei had 18%, up from 17%. The smartphone shipment results show that Huawei is catching up with Samsung in the global market despite the trade crisis it is currently embroiled in.

A Huawei booth featuring 5G technology in 2018 Samsung Appoints Roh Tae Moon as Head of Mobile Division as 5G Race Heats Up
A Huawei booth featuring 5G technology in 2018
REUTERS/Stringer

The race for the top spot in 5G technology is another aspect for worry for Samsung. As at December 2019, Samsung has just 4 5G phones: Galaxy A90 5G, the Galaxy S10 5G, the Note 10 Plus 5G and the Galaxy Fold 5G. Huawei boasts of 8 5G phones, 6 of which sell on the Huawei brand, and 2 on its subsidiary brand, Honor.

Furthermore, while Samsung reported that it shipped more than 6.7 million Galaxy 5G smartphones in 2019, Huawei reported last week that it shipped more than 6.9 million 5G phones in 2019.

As Samsung intensifies its efforts to rise above Huawei in the 5G market share especially in the end user devices, Roh Tae-moon is basically expected to solve the Huawei problem and boost sales of more 5G-enabled devices in 2020.

“Samsung’s reshuffle seems aimed at coping with a potential major market change with the new (5G) technology,” Tom Kang an analyst from Counterpointsaid. “The young executive is known to be decisive and so is likely to respond swiftly to that change to defend Samsung’s lead from Huawei.”

Samsung Appoints Roh Tae Moon as Head of Mobile Division as 5G Race Heats Up
Samsung store

In Africa, Huawei’s performance is largely due to its shipment and sale of many low-end phones. While Samsung also released middle-end range of phones, specifically the A-series for its users, Huawei has more options for most of the African populace.

Globally, while Samsung is taking executive measures to ensure the stability of the brand in the wake of its court cases, it is also making moves to ensure it stays ahead of its biggest 5G competition, Huawei.


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