Samsung Electronics have launched its latest foldable smartphones in around 40 countries, hoping the new products could jump-start the lacklustre global smartphone sales amid high inflation.
The world's largest smartphone maker said the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Flip 4, along with the Galaxy Watch 5 and the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro, are officially released in South Korea, the US and France, among others, and plans to expand the products' availability into around 130 countries by September.
Preorders for the foldable phones had been available in approximately 70 countries since Samsung unveiled them earlier this month during an online "Unpacked" event.
Samsung has witnessed a robust demand for its fourth-generation of foldable in India, registering more than 50,000 pre-bookings for Galaxy Fold4 and Galaxy Flip4 in less than 12 hours.
Available in Bora Purple, Graphite and Pink Gold colours, Galaxy Z Flip4 is priced at Rs 89,999 for the 8GB+128GB variant and Rs 94,999 for the 8GB+256GB variant.
The 'Bespoke Edition' that offers glass colours and frame options will be available on Samsung Live and Samsung Exclusive Stores for Rs 97,999, the company said in a statement.
Available in Graygreen, Beige and Phantom Black colours, Galaxy Z Fold4 is priced at Rs 154,999 for the 12GB+256GB variant and Rs 164,999 for the 12GB+512GB variant.
Consumers can also purchase the 12GB+1TB variant exclusively on Samsung Live and Samsung Exclusive Stores for Rs 184,999.
In South Korea, 970,000 preorders were made for the seven days ended on August 22, according to the company, the biggest figure for any foldable phone and up around 5.4 per cent from the previous record, reports Yonhap news agency.
The clamshell-style Galaxy Z Flip 4, fitted with a thinner hinge, comes with longer battery life and stronger camera performance. The much larger Galaxy Z Fold 4, which opens like a book, became lighter and offers an enhanced multitasking and user-friendly screen environment with a layout similar to that of a PC. It also comes with longer battery life and better shock protection features.
While Samsung is an early trailblazer in the global foldable market, the new phones seem to lack breakthrough innovations and have similar specifications, some experts said.
The latest foldable smartphone series came at a time when the world's largest smartphone maker, like many other consumer devices companies, is facing headwinds from global economic woes that have left consumers with less money to spend on nonessential goods.
Samsung shipped 60 million smartphones in the second quarter, leading the global smartphone market with a 21 per cent market share, according to market research firm Canalys. The tally is down 19 per cent from the previous quarter but slightly up from 58 million a year ago.