According to sales reports the Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch is struggling, prompting some to brand it a big flop. But Samung has defended the smartwatch and used the famously scantily clad performer Miley Cyrus to push sales.
It was revealed by Business Korea that cumulative sales for the device are under 50,000, with daily sales in the range of 800-900. This is no where near what the industry thought it would get, with the high price tag and limited intial device support being blamed for the low sales.
Samsung told Reuters that 800,000 have been shipped but Samsung Korea confirmed that the figure refers to the number of Gears shipped to retailers, not customers.
As negative as these reports sound, if you ask David Eun, EVP and head of the Open Innovation Center at Samsung, the Gear is more like an unripe tomato.
“When you’re dealing with innovation and you’re dealing with start ups, I always make the analogy to small green tomatoes,” Eun said during a Business Insider Ignition conference sit-down. “What we’re dealing with is small green tomatoes. What we want to do is take care of them and work with them so they can become big red ripe tomatoes.”
“You want to make sure that you don’t pluck the green tomato too early, and you want to make sure you don’t criticize a small green tomato for not being that big, red ripe tomato,” he continued.
“There can be that tendency, especially in larger companies … when you see a start up, and you say, ‘Hey, it’s just me and five other folks and we’ve been working really hard X number of months and this is what we’re doing.’ And they’re thinking, ‘Well this isn’t quite Gmail, is it?’ And of course not, it’s a small green tomato.”
Whether the Gear is an unripe tomato or not, the fact still remains that not as many are buying them as originally thought.
“Look At Our Gear”
In a bid to shift the smartwatch and boost sales, Samsung has turned to Miley Cyrus’ panties. On Monday the UK section of the company tweeted: “Hey, Miley. You should have a look at our Gear,” and attached a picture of skimpy looking knickers by way of an example.
“For performers who usually have no pockets for a phone,” the Galaxy caption reads. Miley Cyrus has become famous for performing in just skimpy underwear, so to Samsung she seems the ideal recommendation.
Galaxy Gear’s competitor Pebble has been selling its smartwatch since the crowd-funded campaign started in 2012. The company claims to have shipped 190,000 devices to buyers. Perhaps the fact that they sell mainly direct to the buyer, is what makes the sales look considerably healthier than the Gear’s, which instead are possibly clogging up stores’ stock rooms around the world.
I can’t help but wonder whether the whole idea of a smartwatch is pointless; the sales figures certainly seem to tell the same story. What do you think?