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The Galaxy S9 is still a great phone, but are people actually buying it?

It seems Samsung was right to downgrade its earnings expectations earlier in the year, as after the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 maker announced its quarterly earnings, things were more or less in line with its revised forcecast.

The company brought in 14.87 trillion won (around £10 billion) in profit out of a total revenue of 58.4 trillion won (around £40 billion) in the quarter.

Although profit is still up year-on-year, it’s a slight fall from Q1 2018 when the firm recorded 15.64 trillion won profit and 60.56 trillion won in revenue, and brings to an end a record run of profits for the firm, reported The Verge.

The reason? Apparently sales of Samsung’s smartphones and display panels have been “softer” than the company expected. Bloomberg has previously noted that its latest flagship, the Samsung Galaxy S9, hasn’t exactly been flying off store shelves, and Samsung has referred to its sales as “slow.”

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Galaxy S9 Sales: An iterative phone in a revolutionary year?

So what’s the problem with the phone? The S9 is hardly a slouch in either the performance or looks department, and we happily rank it as the best smartphone in the world right now, but clearly there’s something about it that hasn’t resonated with consumers.

Perhaps it’s the fact that while Samsung has settled into a two-year development cycle for its handsets, Apple abandoned its own ‘S’ line last year. While most people expected to see an iPhone 7s in 2017, Apple instead jumped straight to the iPhone 8, and then also released the iPhone X to completely shake up its model – though normal order was restored in 2018 with the more incremental iPhone XS and iPhone XR.

The iPhone X wasn’t initially to everyone’s taste, but clearly its eye-catching notched display has caught the attention of the industry, with dozens of handsets imitating the design in the first half of 2018.

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Meanwhile, outside of a specs bump the S9 was very similar to the Galaxy S8. In any other year this might have been enough, but clearly 2018 needed more.

Things aren’t likely to immediately change for Samsung. Rumours point towards its next phone, the Galaxy Note 9, being just as iterative as the S9. This leaves the S10 to bring some fresh ideas to the table, and maybe bring back the same kind of excitement that Samsung saw around its S7.

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Why do you think the S9 has failed to meet expectations? Let us know @TrustedReviews.

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