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Cocky Samsung believes that they're the Leader of 'Meaningful Innovation'

1af samsung galaxy note 7


On Tuesday we reported on Samsung's new Galaxy Note 7 and its new Iris Scanner and pointed to a number of patents that Patently Mobile had covered over the last few years supporting such a technology. Of course HP let it out of the bag weeks ago that they would be introducing that very same feature in their upcoming smartphone with Windows 10 on August 29 – just to take the limelight away from Samsung who thinks that they're the only great innovator in the smartphone industry.


After Apple pummeled Samsung's Galaxy line-up of smartphones in the 2014-2015 period with the arrival of the iPhone 6 and their first phablet the iPhone 6 Plus, Samsung is getting a bit of bounce this year as the iPhone 6s hasn't been able to match the iPhone 6's record breaking sales ceiling – and really never had a chance of doing so anyways.


Samsung has put their best foot forward with their new Galaxy S7 and Note 7 and had to before Apple launches their new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. Apple will tout a new dual camera feature which could be a killer app if they have supporting apps to make that feature both a leap forward in photo taking and a lot of fun with an app like Faceshift that they acquired years ago. This is where Apple could shine combining a great hardware feature with great software.


When you think about it, Apple's Touch ID was a great feature that has worked well for them in terms of delivering a new level security and tie-in with Apple Pay which actually works.


On the flipside, Samsung's Touch ID copycat feature has been plagued with problems and so introducing an Iris scanner is not so much of an innovation than it is trying to save face for failing to deliver a reliable fingerprint scanner. Blah, blah, blah it's 100 times more secure than a fingerprint says their marketing, but that may be true if you were getting your eyes scanned at the Pentagon. I highly doubt that the Samsung version of an iris scanner for a smartphone will ever prove to be that superior to fingerprint scanning. But who knows, only time will tell if it actually pans out as marketed at the event on Tuesday in New York. Just don't hold your breath.


But for their home market, South Korea, they're playing it all up as if Samsung just finished walking on water.


Samsung's President Ko Dong-jin of Samsung Electronics' Wireless Business Department stated for a Korean report that "Meaningful innovations have to satisfy customers' needs and challenge stereotypical thinking. If one listens closely to voices of customers, there are still many innovations that still need to happen."


The Korean report added that "This indicates that Galaxy Note 7 is a fruit of meaningful innovation that provides better values and convenience to customers and a rebuttal towards skepticism that believes that innovation of Smartphones will be impossible."


When making a purchase with an iPhone with Apple Pay it's a simple and quick touch of the display. Will it really be more convenient for Samsung customers to use a retina scan to make a purchase than a fingerprint scan? I don't think so. And what if you're in a restaurant that happens to have low lighting? Oh, yes, they can use their dysfunctional fingerprint scanner.


Yes, an iris scanner sounds cool no doubt, but it's going to have to prove that it's actually going to deliver a "meaningful" advantage when the alternative is still the preferred choice by consumers.


That aside, the ETnews report played up the new Note 7 and pushed the phrase "meaningful innovation" several times with lines like this: "Samsung Electronics has expressed its confidence of occupying Smartphone markets in advance with 'meaningful innovation' and it also materialized its course of action in continuing meaningful innovation on 'ecosystem of Galaxy.'


Samsung wants to replace Apple as the company that introduces industry leading innovation to the world every year. Their goal going forward is to rob Apple of this mantle by delivering 'meaningful innovations' a month ahead of Apple's usual September roll out of the next iPhone.


The report also noted that "This can be seen as Samsung Electronics' confidence in meaningful innovation that is applied to Galaxy Note 7 and as Samsung Electronics declaring a war against Apple in occupying superiority in advance.


And lastly the report noted that "Samsung Electronics chose 'iris recognition' and 'S Pen', which are applied to Galaxy Note 7, as examples of meaningful innovation. Samsung Electronics met demands from customers on Galaxy Note."


2af iris scanner


Of course the S Pen isn't new and the iris scanner is a gimmick until proven otherwise, but it's a marketing win for Samsung as it is perceived as a wow factor in the media and from morning talk show hosts.


In the end, Samsung believes they're on a roll this year that will roll over Apple no matter what they come out with in September. Of course we'll know in September if their bravado pays off.


Although I think Samsung is sleazy on many levels and a pain in Apple's side that they tolerate because they want Samsung's OLED displays for 2017 and beyond and other components – they're still a competitor that tries to move the industry forward instead of being like the Chinese OPPO that uses stock components and mirrors Samsung and Apple designs at half the price, adding nothing to the industry.


Apple will one day bring the Apple Pencil to a version of the iPhone Plus or Pro and challenge Samsung's Note head on. And like the iPhone 7 Plus which became the winning phablet, Apple could do it again and humble the Note 7 and their creators.


So while Apple will continue to deliver real innovations and improved innovations most every year, it's still good to have a ruthless competitor like Samsung in our faces to make the rivalry fun to follow so that we can cheer Apple on even more as Samsung fans hiss and boo on the sidelines.


And look, we all need a good laugh on a Friday and Samsung's 'meaningful innovation' by way of the iris scanner just hit my funny bone just right – just like the fake photo of a consumer being happy with the new Note 7 in our cover graphic when we know it's really a model perfectly positioned and framed for the photo. These guys are a barrel of laughs. Thanks Samsung.   


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