Samsung may abandon laptops by 2011

A senior manager says 11 million more units must be sold by then to reach 5.7 percent market share, which has grown only from 1.2 percent in 2005 to 1.7 percent in 2007.

Rory Reid
2 min read
Crave UK

Samsung will cease operation of its laptop division if it doesn't improve its market share by 2011, according to one of the company's senior managers.

The news was broken to Crave UK while on a visit to Samsung's headquarters in Suwon, South Korea. Sukyong Hong, the senior manager of overseas sales and marketing for the company's computer division, said an additional 11 million units must be sold worldwide by the year 2011 in order to reach 5.7 percent market share--a massive task, considering Samsung's worldwide market share has only grown from 1.2 percent in 2005 to 1.7 percent in 2007.

To stay afloat, Samsung says it will have to--at least--overtake Sony, which currently lays claim to 6 percent of the laptop market. The rest of its primary competitors seem out of reach. Toshiba has 10 percent, Dell is on 14 percent, Acer has 16 percent, and Hewlett-Packard tops the charts on 23 percent.

One of the most obvious ways of increasing market share is to venture into the mini-PC market along with the likes of Asus, HP, and MSI, but Samsung seems reluctant to do so. The company fears that making a low-cost laptop will jeopardize sales of its existing machines.

Another alternative is to enter the U.S. market. Currently the only Samsung laptop being sold in the U.S. is the Q1 UMPC, which isn't a consumer favorite due to its high price and questionable usability.

The irony of this story is that Samsung provides many of the components used inside Sony laptops, including the LCD panels--so even if Sony does kick its proverbial backside, it's not exactly the end of the world.

(Source: Crave UK)