Samsung may drop the S series brand for the Galaxy S9 successor

DJ Koh has been dishing out a bucketload of hints about Samsung’s future plans during MWC 2018. We’ve already heard that Bixby 2.0 is in the works, possibly alongside a Bixby smart speaker, and now the company’s mobile chief has suggested that the “Galaxy S10” may eventually be called something completely different.

In a Q&A session with press at the Barcelona event (via The Investor), Koh was asked whether the company would budge on its naming scheme for the next Galaxy S model. In response, Koh said:

Although Samsung will stick to Galaxy, we have been thinking about whether we need to maintain the S moniker or the numbering system.

With the dust having barely settled on the launch of the Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus, it’s perhaps a little early to kickstart the Galaxy S10 rumor mill. Then again, this is the CEO of Samsung’s mobile division talking… so let’s go nuts.

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Firstly, it’s hardly a surprise to hear that the “Galaxy” part of Samsung’s flagship series isn’t going anywhere as the “Galaxy” brand is now synonymous with the South Korean giant’s image on a global scale. The number, however, is apparently negotiable.

The most obvious and pertinent comparison here would be Samsung’s closest rival from Cupertino. Apple famously skipped over the “iPhone 9” last year for its 10th anniversary device, the iPhone X. Does that mean we can expect the “Samsung Galaxy X” this time next year?

Maybe, but there’s the small issue that the Galaxy X name carries a lot of baggage thanks to years of rumors that have pegged Galaxy X as the name of Samsung’s long-rumored foldable smartphone.

Coincidentally, Koh was asked about the status of that project in the same Q&A and the response is very telling:

We can’t say yet, exactly. We just want to note that before, Samsung used to put more focus on becoming “the world’s first,” or “the first in the market,” rather than on creating meaningful products. Things do not work that way today. Our strategy is to roll out new products worth paying for.

This echoes Koh’s earlier response on the topic of the mysterious foldable phone, and it’s not hard to hear echoes of Apple’s ‘best, not first’ mantra in all of these quotes.

Yet, with foldable devices seemingly positioned as the ‘next big thing’ that will move the wider industry forward both in terms of design and consumer demand, Samsung’s cautious approach may well be a smart one. As to whether the eventual Galaxy S9 successor will fulfill that role (perhaps at MWC 2019), we’ll just have to wait and see.

Would you be happy to see Samsung switch up its naming system for the “S10”? Let us know in the comments.

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