News

Samsung still obsessed with Apple!

Editorial

Samsung switches to advertising the iPad, knocking their own displays

News

New processors for iPhone 6 reportedly shipping from TSMC

iPhone

Samsung's latest ad shows just how irresistible the iPhone truly is

iPhone

Samsung's latest Galaxy S5 ad pokes fun at iPhone battery

News

Samsung was reportedly in talks to buy the company behind Siri's voice

News

EU and South Korea working together to develop 5G networks

News

Intel and Samsung teaming up for lower-cost 4K monitors

News

Apple maintains slight marketshare lead in US, but Samsung is catching up

News

Apple lawyers claim Samsung lawyer's 'jihadist' comparisons are making talks difficult, Samsung says Apple's being difficult

News

Samsung, Apple rumored to be in settlement talks

News

Heathrow says Terminal 5 signage and branding haven't changed, Samsung being 'tongue-in-cheek'

Editorial

The Terminal Galaxy S5, Heathrow, and the value of just saying 'no'

Links

Apple vs. Samsung: The smartphone war summarized

News

Verdict reached in Apple v. Samsung case, $120 million damages to Apple

News

IDC data shows tablet sales slowing but Apple and Samsung still own the market

News

Q1 2014 smartphone market share report shows strong performance for Apple

News

Samsung and Apple still lead global smartphone market, but smaller rivals are chipping away at their share

News

Shocker: Samsung obfuscated dismal tablet sales

News

Samsung takes aim at iPad again with new ads for the Galaxy Pro series tablets

How Samsung built their Galaxy on the back of Apple

How Samsung built their Galaxy on the back of Apple

It's widely known that, as Samsung re-invented themselves as a modern smartphone maker, they took considerable, almost absurd, inspiration from Apple. Yet copying design may not have been the only way Samsung used Apple's work to slingshot themselves to the top of the smartphone marketshare charts. Unlike every other Android manufacturer on the planet, Samsung was and is also Apple's manufacturing partner, and that might have given them a huge advantage in terms of financed capacity and knowledge of future plans. Horace Dediu addresses that very point on Asymco:

Receiving funds with which to build capacity is an enormous help when turning on production for your own versions of the product. With that knowledge and the capacity built to serve Apple, Samsung was able to go from near zero market share in smartphones to being the largest vendor in two years a feat that Apple itself could not accomplish.

James Allworth follows up on Asymco in greater detail, on how Apple can cope with this type of threat from Samsung.

So, what’s Apple got to do? In so much as it is able to trust its suppliers of key components not to become competitors, it can continue to use them. But where it can’t, or where those suppliers have already become competitors, it has only one sensible choice — replace them. It has two choices here: the first (and obvious one) is with another supplier. But that risks the same thing happening all over again — Apple nursing another supplier into a competitor. The second choice: for components and services that are critical to maintaining competitive advantage in the markets which Apple plays, Apple needs to build the components themselves.

Apple has already switched to designing their own chipsets with the Apple A6, and will be manufacturing a Mac in the US next year. The damage with Samsung is already done, however. Apple showed them how to design and manufacturer smartphones at scale, and Samsung, to their credit, learned quickly and well.

Arguably, Samsung hasn't -- yet -- done as well in tablets as it has in smartphones, but either way there's no putting their genie back in the bottle. All Apple can do now is prevent another partner from becoming a competitor.

Both articles are excellent. Read them here:

Source: Asymco, Asymco

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

More Posts

 

3
loading...
41
loading...
114
loading...
0
loading...

← Previously

US Patent office invalidates previous validation of Apple multitouch patent, unless and until they validate it again

Next up →

Enjoy the classic Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer story on your iPhone and iPad this Holiday season

There are 68 comments. Add yours.

StuartV says:

Well, I don't know about anybody else, but I was instantly able to tell at a glance which phone in that picture is an iPhone and that the rest are not...

okli says:

that's because RENE didn't include iPhone 3G/3Gs and older models from Samy

okli says:

now after RENE changed the Pix... compare the back of this GS3 to 3Gs and 3G iPhones... Koreans are never so stupid to copy the whole thing... they always just copy bits they like

rmkilc says:

From the picture alone, I was instantly able to tell which phone would be the least desirable. The tiny one with a boring UI.

ipodfreek says:

I'll take the superior hardware with a boring UI over a Droid with a sad selection of apps, inconsistent hardware/software, and the size of a cutting board.

jbrandonf says:

Of all the things wrong with android you say sad selection of apps? You can do better.

Rene Ritchie says:

You know what would be fun? If you guys actually read the article before making the jokes :)

It has nothing to so with "look" of the phone -- it has to do with the capacity to produce phones Samsung gained by being an OEM, then switching to making their own devices.

rmkilc says:

Apple sued Samsung (and only won here in the US where the jury was biased), and now Apple is cutting their ties with Samsung as fast as they can. Seems to me Apple is the bad guy. Tell me what Samsung is doing wrong? Why can't Samsung build the Galaxy S III, AND build iPhone processors?

ernie4152 says:

it is wrong if you're an apple fanboy

lungho says:

Go home fanboy.

I got an iPhone 5 and a Galaxy Tablet, so I'm hardly biased. The fact that Samsung's phones and tablets happen to be very similar to iPhones and iPads is no coincidence. Hell, before iPhone, all of Samsung's smart phones looked like knockoff BlackBerries. Apple has as much right to protect their intellectual property as any other company.

okli says:

+1... Koreans did follow the same strategy with cars and all the other products ...and did never apologize to any one...they don't know what's moral, honesty or far-play... they have no problem with :stealing other peoples ideas...paying corrupt judges... killing and eating dogs...they are unmoral & dishonest liars...I was working for Korean companies for over 20 years... bin there many times... they think they are the greatest in everything ...but only, what they are really good in... is: eating dogs and copy-cats ... believe me ...DUDES

jbrandonf says:

Way to generalize you racist asshole. I'm thankful that someone is giving Apple competition so they don't sit on their laurels and release slightly updated devices every year.. Let the courts decide whether they infringed copyright.

okli says:

U just showed Ur identity...DUDE....Ur real name is probably Some Skunk Kim... ait.... because this racism argument is the most popular reaction one get from a Korean if he is criticizes him for what ever reason... in fact Koreans are the biggest nationalists I ever met... U guys also seems to be confused by the meaning of the word RACIST ...U see.... when U call Japanese people: stupid ugly monkeys, which I heard many times in Korea... that is a racism .. or if I would call ya: a yellow dog-eating Pig with slashed eyes... nun... that would be racism too... which I didn't... did I ?

jbrandonf says:

Did Apple patent the full touch screen design?

okli says:

check wikipedia or something... Kim... DUDE... before posting a stpd comment... otherwise everyone would think Ure an ID

9thWonder says:

I await you're evidence of juror bias in the verdict.

Also verdicts will be different in different countries because the law is different in different countries. Holding an ounce of weed may get you arrested in Alabama. It won't in Amsterdam.

Additionally, all the cases don't deal with all the same issues. You can't simply lump them all together like they are all going to be decided one way, on just one issue, based on a single legal standard. That's not how it works.

NullifiedOne says:

most reports would say other countries hate america, so wouldnt by your same argument, mean that all the other countries that apple did not win in were biased against the american company?

vanadiumdroid says:

They lost in Europe with the tablet suit. They didnt win the tablet suit in the US either. So stop with the conspiracy theories..

xstex says:

He was biased yet you have zero evidence as you would never claim the same about the ones Samsung did win. Sign of a true fanboy.

StuartV says:

I did read the article. There was no actual news there. It was stuff that we all have known for a while. But, laced with pejoratives like "Samsung built their Galaxy on the back of Apple," and Samsung took "absurd" inspiration from Apple.

Why was it absurd? Was it absurd when Apple got their inspiration for much of their early computer technology directly from Xerox? No. It was smart. And what Samsung has done was also smart. And what Apple did by way of teaching Samsung how to beat Apple at their own game was dumb. Almost absurd, even.

okli says:

there is no way an andro - fundamentalist would understand WYSIWYG or the difference between computer technology and computer user interface... all what he can understand is just :
" there is NO GOD but AndroLAH,,, and saMYHAMED is his messenger !!!"

Tariq.H says:

yea let's keep religions alone, not the site for that eh?

okli says:

if Ure looking for the mark of the BEAST.... DUDE... its just there in your right hand !!!

CORYK333 says:

But why READ the ACTUAL ARTICLE, when scrolling down to "add new comment" & posting the same lame a$$ "jokes" is so much easier for them to do. Reading & then actually understanding the article might be asking too much

SteveW928 says:

The ability to read and think seem to be lost arts... especially on Internet forums.

rodger-bb says:

I use to like iMore but now they are turning into a Apple fanboy page. Every story they print is so in favor of apple.

tedcranmore says:

Did any of you read the article? Nothing fanboy about it. Read the links, this is about how apple may have been very shortsighted about using Samsung and their primary manufacturer since it gives them so much knowledge of the smartphone world inside details with appe doing the investing. It's pretty negative on apple because it is
calling them stupid for not recognizing this. It says 'Samsung, to their credit..." has taken advantage of this.

mjs416 says:

Nothing fan boy-ish?

"It's widely known that, as Samsung re-invented themselves as a modern smartphone maker, they took considerable, almost absurd, inspiration from Apple. "

And Apple didnt reinvent themselves by stealing ideas from Xerox in the 80's? There is even footage of Steve Jobs saying he steals ideas yet you hold Samsung to a considerably, almost absurdly, different standard.

vanadiumdroid says:

If the article was about Apple getting ideas from Xerox, I am sure it would have been mentioned. But this article is about Apple and Samsung. There was no comparision between who stole the most, hence no need to mention the former..

jbrandonf says:

Apple steals ideas, it came from the words of one of their very founders. Problem is, they get super pissed when its done to them.

It's arguable that Samsung improved on Apple's designs by including bigger screens, removable batteries and SD slots which some people need.

dsignori says:

Regarding iMore articles... I would expect them to lean Apple's way a bit. I love Android, but Android sites are just as bad or worse. The titles of the articles could be a bit less provocative I would think (many times they beg for responses), but otherwise I think articles here are pretty par for the modern blog world, at least IMO.

As for the article, I think it is interesting. It seems to have interesting (if not obvious) points about what enabled Samsung to grow in the smartphone world. What is given less weight than it probably should have though, is the fact that Samsung - long before the iPhone - was already a master of mass production - and yes, supply chain efficiency - in all kinds of technology, from TVs to refrigerators. It definitely helped being Apples main supplier, no question. However, I think a little TOO much weight regarding that is given here overall.

Taz89 says:

you said it way better than me lol was thinking of how to say the last paragraph you wrote.

StuartV says:

"I think a little TOO much weight regarding that is given here overall."

It's not too much if your mission is to prop up the idea that Samsung totally ripped off Apple and owes the major part of their success to Apple. And that Apple was the original inventor of all the technology and design that goes into the iPhone and iPad.

Rob White says:

You made this too easy;

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/05/us/david-gelernter-discusses-patent-cl...

The pull quote from the article that reads like a history lesson on Steve Jobs;

Among the documents obtained from Apple was the e-mail Mr. Jobs sent in 2001 to his lieutenants after seeing an article in The New York Times about Scopeware.

“Please check out this software ASAP,” he wrote. “It may be something for our future, and we may want to secure a license ASAP.”

Now go read the whole story. Then get back to us on all that technology & design that Apple 'invented' as you say.

StuartV says:

Are you talking to me? If you actually read what I've written, you may figure out that my whole point was that Appple did not invent a lot of the stuff they're selling. They got their ideas from other people. So, slamming Samsung for taking ideas from Apple and running with them is completely hypocritical.

Rob White says:

My mistake. I read your comment out of context. My apologies for that.

I all but quit visiting this site (even though I own an iPhone 5 among the 4 other smartphones we have) due to Rene's absolute obsession with Samsung & putting them as the greatest copycat ever all the while refusing to even acknowledge Apple's own checkered past of glaring IP theft. I'll leave the link up there for others to possibly read a little truth about their beliefs of Apple's perfection & oh so mighty originality.

My apologies again for singling you out.

StuartV says:

No sweat. Thank you for the apology. We are definitely on the same page. :-)

unstoppablekem says:

If you put a windows phone (especially the 920 and the 8X), you could tell the difference. The UI on Windows Phone is a lot more unique and isn't a boring grid of icons.

Haruhiko says:

Steve Jobs insisted to sue HTC but failed to realise Samsung was their real enemy. This is one big strategic failure of him that nobody mentioned.

jbrandonf says:

They stood the most chance of winning against a smaller OEM. Also, Samsung wasn't the android powerhouse it is now.

Taz89 says:

i swear this site is obsessed with samsung...you might aswel make it a samsung and apple site...i have read the article and the comparison to asus and dell is wrong and why? because unlike asus samsung allready were huge,they allready had huge plants,were allready making smartphones,tvs etc you could very much say that the fact that apple were working with these huge companies like creating chips with samsung is helping apple because they are now able to create chips by themselves by working with people who actually make them...its a 2 way thing cause when you are working with someone you also learn things yourself.

9thWonder says:

As i touched on below, i think there is a real blind spot in the western smartphone world that thinks samsung just makes phones. Which is quite interesting considering i'm live in Cali and i'm currently typing this while watching my 50 inch Samsung flat screen, across from my Samsung refridgerator, which is next to my Samsung microwave, and later i'll go play some xbox which has an old samsung hard drive inside it's expansion pack, only 20GBs but my friend gave it to me so free is free.

cc3d says:

The whole world needs to thank Apple for everything as nothing would be possible without Apple and their untouchable perfectness!!

guanaman says:

Here, you can have this crumb of a reply, troll. Nothing more.

CORYK333 says:

Gets brush/pan.....proceeds to sweep up that little crumb, the troll doesn't deserve it

toddtmw says:

So, is there like a petition or something we can sign to get Rene to stop writing for the site?

Just thinking it might be nice if we had articles that were, I don't know a little less angry...

okli says:

is there like a petition or something we can sign to get Trolls to stop writing comments on this site ? that would make it a lot less angry... DUDE... its not Rene's writing... what's the problem here

9thWonder says:

"It's widely known that, as Samsung re-invented themselves as a modern smartphone maker."

I disagree with that statement. It seems to follow the common error on smartphone websites that Samsung is a phone company. It is not. It makes much much more than phones. Thus, Samsung has not re-invented themselves. Samsung largely engages in the businesses it has for quite a long time now. Samsung has for a very long time sold, broadly speaking, consumer electronics (including mobile phones), large and small appliances, built boats, oil rigs and commercial buildings, and sells countless electronic components including screens, memory, and chips. The fact that phone enthusiasts focus almost exclusively on their phones doesn't mean Samsung now sells only phones. And they have been selling more then phones for a quite some time. Reinvention is a wholesale change. I don't see that. I see them merely taking advantage of already making phones thus having a chance to cash in on a lucrative market. Yes, Samsung now makes lots smartphones. But to boil them down to a company that is just phones is a gross oversimplification in my opinion.

m1n3 says:

Who can really know if it apple that nurture samsung or the way around, unless you are the person the one that make decision.
Producing the large amount of apple product doesn't mean that apple is nurture samsung. Maybe it's just samsung evolve & learn to meet their customer demand.
Also, why not think that samsung nurture apple? Remember in the beginning, apple didn't design their SoC they just stamp it with their name, only lately they start to design their SoC. Does it mean you can argue that samsung nurture apple to make a lot of money with samsung technology until they can hire the correct people and create their own design?
Just give you insight of the other side of coin. :)

Solublepeter says:

I don't think Renee meant Samsung became mainly a smartphone maker, but that that side of their business was greatly reinvented.

cardfan says:

Where's the "how Apple learned to design their own chips on the back of Samsung?" Or "How Apple learned to do their own Maps on the back of Google?"

Samsung paid attention and did what anyone else could do early on. They copied Apple on a lot of things down to icons and what the screen looks like with their skin (touchwhiz or whatever). It's the marketing, the one brand (galaxy), and the decent screens not to mention the early Nexus's (so a more exclusive relationship with Google) that propelled Samsung into the number one android maker. HTC, Moto, and others just couldn't compare.

With the Galaxy brand taking off and launching the same devices (or closely the same) on all carriers, that, more than anything, was the turning point. Consistency in a world of too many different android offerings. Samsung then focused on what the iphone wasn't. Bigger screens. What the iphone couldn't do because iOS doesn't scale like android. Bigger screens. So came the Note. Bigger Galaxy phones.

Samsung was already a leading phone maker before Apple came along. Different brands on different carriers. Instinct? Sprint got an android from Samsung shortly after the Palm Pre came along (along with HTC Hero). Both those android phones took over on Sprint and buried the plagued Pre. But Samsung was a mess with its different brandings of the same phone made different for each carrier. If anything, the iphone and their own stumbling taught them to trash everything and go with one brand (Galaxy).

But the point is, Samsung went through its growing pains. The Galaxy didn't just come about because they supplied Apple.

cardfan says:

Where's the "how Apple learned to design their own chips on the back of Samsung?" Or "How Apple learned to do their own Maps on the back of Google?"

Samsung paid attention and did what anyone else could do early on. They copied Apple on a lot of things down to icons and what the screen looks like with their skin (touchwhiz or whatever). It's the marketing, the one brand (galaxy), and the decent screens not to mention the early Nexus's (so a more exclusive relationship with Google) that propelled Samsung into the number one android maker. HTC, Moto, and others just couldn't compare.

With the Galaxy brand taking off and launching the same devices (or closely the same) on all carriers, that, more than anything, was the turning point. Consistency in a world of too many different android offerings. Samsung then focused on what the iphone wasn't. Bigger screens. What the iphone couldn't do because iOS doesn't scale like android. Bigger screens. So came the Note. Bigger Galaxy phones.

Samsung was already a leading phone maker before Apple came along. Different brands on different carriers. Instinct? Sprint got an android from Samsung shortly after the Palm Pre came along (along with HTC Hero). (You can tell Samsung had problems since I can't even begin to remember those throwaway names they used for their different android phones at that time). Both those android phones took over on Sprint and buried the plagued Pre. But Samsung was a mess with its different brandings of the same phone made different for each carrier. That's what changed mostly.

This isn't so much hindsight either. People were buzzing at the time that Samsung and other makers didn't need all the cute throwaway names. Apple was lightyears ahead in marketing.

SockRolid says:

Re: "Apple was lightyears ahead in marketing."

If by "marketing" you mean hiring a better ad agency, I agree.

If by "marketing" you mean signing deals with music, TV, and movie content providers, I agree.

If by "marketing" you mean "letting the product sell itself," I agree.

But if you think "marketing" is the reason for Apple's success, then no, I don't agree. That's a typical bitter Microsoft Apologist (tm) put-down. And a favorite Fandroid Troll (tm) keyword.

Wizzy says:

Every company goes through a life cycle whereby they rise, peak, and then fall. I think Apple has peaked and it shows in their stock price. They can't keep up the pace of the last few years. Apple fans have to realize that they aren't the second coming. Samsung is now firing on all cylinders and Apple is no longer innovating. I predict bad times ahead for Apple.

I've had 3 iphones and 2 Samsungs and the S3 is the best phone I've ever used. Don't get caught up on brand loyalty, it's useless and only serves corporate interests. Get the best phone and you will benefit.

CORYK333 says:

To touch on your last sentence....what A LOT of the more ummm, "passionate" people (iOS users, Android users, the 27 people that use WindowsPhones, etc....) don't realize is that there is no "best phone", only the best phone for YOUR OWN usage patterns/needs. Everyone's mobile needs are different, so the best for 1 won't be the best for another.

vanadiumdroid says:

You last statment os why I choose iPhone. As my name might suggest, I used ti use Android phones, but I have come to realize that Apple devices, iPhone, iPad etc, better serve my needs. I dislike Android as a platform, especially skinned versions. But I agree with you, we must all choose what best serves our needs.

tkim1 says:

As your usage of grammar and spelling suggests, you are a dumbass.

cityhunter says:

Are you implying that Samsung one of the largest electronics and semiconductor manufacturers in the world somehow needed Apple in order to learn how to quickly mass produce components, I think you're putting the cart before the horse on this one, since Apple partnered with Samsung because they had the know how and ability to produce the needed components. Lest you forget Samsung was one of the companies that developed 3g and LTE technologies and hold FRAND patents on both, yes their smartphone market was small but they had a decent cellular phone market.

MayhemMaybe says:

This has been pretty standard for all industries.

Before all that was Commodore back in the Calculator wars with Ti. When Ti decided to undercut them on calculators, Commodore bought their own chip maker MOS in order to never be under the heel of a competitor. This, from stories of those days, ended up putting Atari under Commodore's heel since MOS supplied many of the ROMs for their cartridges. Commodore went on to use MOS to develop chips for their computers after giving up the calculator business. The VIC and SID chips of the Vic-20, 64 and 128. The 6502, 6510 and 8502 processors of the Pet through 128 and the processor of the early Apple 8bit machines. Custom chips in the Amiga line. It allowed them to undercut all other computer makers of the time through this 'vertical integration'.

There is nothing wrong with Samsung using their profits to develop their own business even if they come from a competitor. It is Apples fault for not being vertically integrated, something they seem to be wanting to move toward by sticking toes into CPU modifications and bringing some manufacturing back here to the States. In fact, if could be said that Apple should have seen it coming when they rely on companies who already manufactured products in those markets.

ronjiedotcom says:

What you didn't point out was that if Apple enables another company -- say, Sharp -- to become a competitor, they would become more of a competitor to Samsung, too. While Apple, Samsung and (say) Sharp are competitors in the overall smartphone and tablet markets, Samsung and Sharp would be competitors in the Android smartphone and tablet markets. It would be the best course of action for Apple: divide and conquer. Split the power. Good business move.

slyrobber1 says:

I own a KIA and that product is a huge turd the quality of the materials is crap the service is crap because its a cheap knock off. Well guess what. Samdung is also just a cheap knock off of Apple and no amount of Korean crying will change that. Drop tests made by hemaroid fanboys proved that one long ago. So suck it Korea you make cheap crappy products that are strait up ripp offs of the originals.

Rob White says:

And yet you still bought a Kia? Or were you forced at gunpoint by the car dealer to sign the papers & drive it off the lot? Very strange & curious about you indeed.