The $1,800 Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 Seems Exorbitant, and That’s the Point
Although the Galaxy Z Fold 4’s high price appears absurd, the device isn’t truly intended for the general public.
Samsung revealed the Galaxy Z Fold 4 at its Unpacked event on Wednesday, bringing better multitasking software, a smaller form, and a more robust shell. One thing that hasn’t changed, though, is the startling $1,800 price tag, which few buyers can afford. But the Fold 4 was created specifically for such exclusivity.
When Samsung wants foldable to become more popular, as CEO TM Roh stated during Unpacked, it may seem confusing to retain the Z Fold 4 at a price that is around twice that of other high-end smartphones. Price reductions, I said, would be the most effective method for Samsung to compete with Apple this Christmas season. Samsung is clearly satisfied to make the Z Fold 4 a niche product accessible primarily to wealthy tech enthusiasts given that it has maintained its price.
The Z Fold 4 occupies a niche in which it lacks any significant competitors. In essence, it’s a Ferrari surrounded by Mercedes and BMWs. The entire objective is to achieve that level of exclusivity, offering Samsung a thrilling and aspirational device that sparks interest in the entire lineup. A price reduction of a few hundred dollars won’t have an impact, according to Nabila Popal, research director at IDC.
Even though it won’t be accessible to the majority, keeping the Z Fold 4 at $1,800 is “the right decision, in my opinion,” Popal added.
This dynamic, which goes against the notion that a more affordable foldable may increase interest in the category, is one of the difficulties this entire field faces. In the phone industry, which has seen an endless stream of boring metal and glass slabs arrive for more than a decade, foldable fill an exciting void. However, their exorbitant price tag prevents them from being widely popular.
The only solution is to gradually increase the market and interest by combining thrilling but more expensive options like the Z Fold 4 with the more accessible $1,000 Z Flip 4.
Samsung is betting that the dynamic design of the Z Fold 4, which is still amazing in person, will give the business a boost before Apple’s announcement next month and spark interest in foldable as a whole.
Samsung is counting on its Z Flip line of smartphones to market the idea of foldable, or smartphones that can change their shape. As a result, Samsung still has work to do. According to research firm IDC, slightly more than 7 million foldable are expected to ship in 2021, compared to the 1.3 billion smartphones that were sold in the previous year.
Given that Apple sells seven out of every ten $800 and up premium phones globally, the Z Fold 4’s modest volume could help Samsung regain some of the market shares it has lost.
No discounts are offered while parts are pricey.
Samsung may not have much of an option but to maintain its current rates, even though price reductions might help the company’s foldable phones become more widely accepted. The tiny number of foldable released each year have specialized parts, in contrast to really widespread products like Samsung’s Galaxy S series, which have flat displays and components utilized in many other smartphones.
Because they are still only made in tiny quantities, the extremely specialized components needed are likely still quite expensive, according to Technalysis Research analyst Bob O’Donnell.
Due to this, a chicken-and-egg issue arises that affects all specialty devices: Making parts at scale is the only way for them to become less expensive, yet doing so is useless if consumers purchase insufficient numbers of the expensive gadgets that those parts are used in. Because of this, so few phone manufacturers, including Apple, produce foldable phones, according to O’Donnell.
O’Donnell stated that one of the reasons Apple hasn’t [produced a foldable] either is because the supply chain isn’t really prepared for an Apple-level product.
Samsung is bridging the gap with the Z Flip 4, a clamshell foldable that when closed has half the space of a “flat” smartphone but opens to reveal an interior screen the size of any typical phone’s display. Samsung views the Z Flip 4 as an “entry device” that converts intrepid purchasers into foldable lifers and serves as a transition point for customers to eventually move up to the more powerful, more expensive Z Fold series.
Samsung claims that the Z Flip series is the better-selling one, with 70% of the foldable the company ships going to different markets. The Z Flip looks fashionable, but in the end, it is merely a smaller, more conventional smartphone. It is not a smaller version of the Z Fold gadgets, which increase productivity by unfolding into tablets.
Every year, more foldable are sold, and according to IDC, shipments will reach 25 million foldable by 2025. It’s difficult to predict if that volume will be sufficient to enable more affordable foldable. At least Samsung has used creativity to produce foldable with greater value.
cheaper foldable thanks to carrier discounts and trade-ins
The industry is making an effort to popularise foldably. Because of Samsung’s excellent trade-in prices and several carrier offers, you may purchase a Galaxy Z Fold 4 for less than $1,800. Clients get their hands on the newest smartphones while carriers increase the number of customers using their services and Samsung keeps its prestigious price tag.
If you turn in your older Z Fold 3, Z Fold 2, or this year’s Galaxy S22 Ultra, Samsung will take $1,000 off the stated price of a Z Fold 4. However, trade-in values for the original Z Fold or other top Samsung phones from the past few years are still rather favorable. Even the most expensive iPhones have a respectable trade-in value, but you won’t receive much for phones from Google, Motorola, LG, or OnePlus.
Additionally, carriers can help you save money on the Z Fold 4; Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile all offer different trade-in incentives that can reduce the cost by up to $1,000. Should your home require two foldable, Verizon also provides $800 off a second Z Fold 4 after purchasing a first one.
The alternative is to wait until after Thanksgiving or the holiday season when Samsung might offer new discounts on its foldable.
Just don’t expect Samsung to undercut its most expensive smartphone. The Z Fold 3 costs the same $1,800 on Samsung’s website as it did when it first went on sale a year ago, in contrast to the Z Flip 3, whose price was reduced by $150 once its successor was shown this week. There is no pressure on Samsung to decrease its prices due to the high cost of parts, the need to recoup years of R&D, and a lack of rivals.
Before other Android competitors ramp up in this market and possibly even Apple in a few years, Popal claimed that Samsung is “leading in this space at the moment and can afford to charge a premium.”