Samsung may have been the first to launch a smartphone with a flexible display but sales of the Samsung Galaxy Round suggest that the device has yet to catch the interest of customers. According to South Korea’s Daum web portal, Samsung has only sold 10,000 Galaxy Round smartphones since it went on sale on October 10 (40 days ago).
In comparison, the report points to the Vega Note selling 200,000 units and the Galaxy Note 3 selling some half a million units in the same period. The LG G Flex, also sporting a flexible display, will likely sell better if only because it is is expected to have wider distribution than the Galaxy Round which will remain a South Korea exclusive.
A number of reasons are provided to explain the slow sales. As befits a device that even Samsung sees as a prototype for future devices, it is often not available on display in stores. Where it is and customers are stopping to check it out, most do so out of curiousity without any intention to buy it. The high cost of the device is yet another deterrent as the curved glass display is not enough to justify to customers the price difference between it and similar smartphones without the curved glass (such as the Galaxy Note 3).
Flexible displays are expected to make their presence felt more strongly in 2014 and it will be interesting to see what Samsung and others come up with to try to convince customers that their next smartphone needs to have a flexible display.