Interest in Samsung products has increased thanks to Apple v Samsung trial

Generally when you get slapped with a $1.05 billion fine and the potential ban on your products, it is a bad thing. In the case of Apple v Samsung, Samsung may not have received the short end of the stick after all. As it turns out, the Apple vs Samsung fight in court has had an unintended ripple effect: increased awareness of Samsung products among the general public.

According to Enrique Gutierrez, Chief Technology Office of Digithrive (an eCommerce consultation firm based in Los Angeles, California), the message Apple has sent to the general public through its battle with Samsung is “Samsung products are like Apple products… but cheaper”. Where does he get this seemingly ludicrous idea? Overheard conversations at Starbucks.

Gutierrez was sitting at a Starbucks with his Samsung QX410 laptop and Galaxy Nexus smartphone when he overheard a couple of guys discussing the Apple v Samsung verdict. The following is how that conversation went:

Guy: “Wait, so what they’re saying is, Samsung is the same as Apple?”
Friend: “I know, right? Makes me think twice about how much I paid for my Mac Book”
Guy: “Seriously”

A few minutes passed and Gutierrez heard a couple having a similar conversation:

Husband: “… Samsung’s iPad is the same as Apple’s iPad, and I paid how much for the Apple one? Honey, I told you they were a ripoff”, after looking up the Samsung tablet on his iPhone.
Wife: “Oh wow,” looking at the screen, “… that’s a lot cheaper. Think we can return it?”

The man from the above-mentioned couple had a quick chat with Gutierrez and was amazed that Gutierrez’s Samsung laptop cost $700 (because MacBooks cost a lot more).

According to Gutierrez’s post on Google+, he heard four separate conversations discussing the same thing — Samsung is the same as Apple, but cheaper. If you read the comments on Gutierrez’s Google+ post, you will see he has posted updates indicating that, after made the post, he heard even more conversations of the same kind.

Okay, it must be said Gutierrez is squarely a Samsung/Google/Android fan seeing as he owns a Samsung laptop, Samsung smartphone, and uses Google+. (There is no information on what other devices he owns.) So one could potentially question the validity of his claims. However, assuming he isn’t lying and what he overheard is a general consumer trend across the board, this could be one of the best things to ever happen to Samsung. Or, as Gutierrez puts it, “best billion dollar ad-campaign Samsung ever had”.

Now it should be mentioned the people in the above-quoted conversations are, to be politically correct, morons. Not only do they have no idea what Apple and Samsung went to trial for (news flash: it wasn’t about Macs), but they likely aren’t comparing apple to apples (no pun intended) when looking at Samsung vs Apple products because, as I refuted yesterday, Samsung’s Android products are not “a lot cheaper” than iDevices (Samsung Windows laptops are cheaper than Macs, though).

That being said…

While people like Ashraf may scoff at how uninformed others are, reality is the general public does not spend their time reading about courtroom battles. Rather, most people simply read the headlines. If Gutierrez’s narrative is indeed true (mind you there is no way to confirm or deny his story), then the headlines are telling a vast majority of uninformed consumers that they can buy Samsung and save money but still get Apple-like products. Oops, Apple?

[via Mashable, Gutierrez | Image via B Rosen]

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  • The average user isn’t an Apple FanBoy nor are they Samsung Sheep – they want something that does the very basic jobs that they require and they don’t want a mortgage to buy it. Apple for them was a fad, and now they are thinking that they can get something that does what they want but for less.

    Ordinary people, ordinary incomes, not big on the technical details.

  • Les Morton
  • kevbo

    Questionable publicity? Hmmm. I’ll have to remember that phrase when I go on my next working vacation. I’ll bet even odds that in China, Samsung products are almost totally considered an original copy, and if not then at least a genuine imitation of Apple. Even so, to the rest of the world Samsung is only considered an honest thief when it comes to their smartphone products, which are probably viewed as having the same difference as their Apple counterparts. Surely, nowhere are they considered a genuine fake. Of course, I am barely an amateur expert, so please forgive my arrogant humility when it comes to anticipating the unanticipated. I am almost certain that even Samsung is cautiously optimistic about their future history in the US.

  • John G

    There will be an upsurge in sales of Samsung devices, because of a grab it while you can mentality. The thinking is maybe a ban on them is upcoming.

  • Alec

    despite the questionable publicity to samsung, it nonetheless reinforces the valuable image of apple being the real thing.
    for those who are not aware, in china, fakes are for foreigners, the locals want the real thing – rather ironic.

  • kevbo

    Another interesting article on the fallout from this ongoing, ridiculous saga.

    Surely, no one can disagree that the vast majority of smart phone consumers could care less about the real issues in this case; consequently, what was important for Apple in pursuing this case does not even register with their customer base. These consumers just want what is hip, and the outcome (thus far) of this suit has elevated Samsung to the same hip-ness as Apple in their cursory reading of the verdict. As the appeals go forward, this belief will become more and more entrenched. In the long run, any result will provide the biggest benefit to Samsung, who could not have created the general impression, so quickly, that their product is the same as Apple’s without Apple’s help. Sure, Samsung may have to alter their product, but the victory is in the buyer’s perception of a product’s value, vis-a-vis a competing product. Samsung wins that round. For the life of me, I cannot understand what Apple intended to gain by this suit in the long run.

  • DoktorThomas

    Samsung!! No “fruit” products …

    The lawsuit didn’t change any minds.

    Headline skimmers are sheep–meant to be sacrificed to the wolves or for the dinner table. Perhaps only the superficial buy fruit …

  • Peter

    The goddess of moral justice starts to smirk.

  • Ed

    This could not have turned out more hilarious! I still stand by that they are very different, but this result… All I can say is, I haven’t stopped laughing since I read this, shared it several places, and read it again!

  • Prema

    “Samsung’s iPad is the same as Apple’s iPad”
    bahaha where can i buy a Samsung iPad :D

    i think the vast majority just don’t really understand tech and they deem samsung = apple. For that first quote, the friend obviously questions his macbook purchase, but he doesn’t really think about OSX and whether or not he wants it or not… what i mean is samsung is samsung in a samsung way and apple is apple in a apple way.

    I don’t know, the media is a pro at such things. making the important things less noticeable and making the less important (and more foolish, imho) much more visible… sort of disgusts me… but tis the world we live in :D

    nice read though ashraf. love how dottech is getting more articles everyday, though it does distract me from college work ;)

  • Ashraf

    @Frank: I swear I proofread :-( Thanks, fixed.

  • Frank

    yeah, Ashraf, you’re right.
    There’s a lot of overhead in many conversations at Starbucks :)
    (Line 8)