I hear a lot of people talking about the S6 hardware being a cut above the iphone 6 and that Apple have to catch up. It doesn't appear that the sales numbers are reflecting this.
Android Circuit: Galaxy S6's Sales Disaster, New Samsung Galaxy Launch Date, Xperia Z4 Tablet Review
Taking a look back at seven days of news across the Android world, this weeks Android Circuit highlights a number of stories including the low sales of the Samsung Galaxy S6 family, the early arrival of the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, early reviews of the Sony Xperia Z4 tablet, Microsoft Office preview for Android, the new OnePlus 2 handset is benchmarked online, Android Wear updates, MixRadio arrives on the platform, and the release of AdBlocks Android browser.
Android Circuit is here to remind you of a few of the many things that have happened around Android in the last week (and you can read the weekly Apple news digest here).
Galaxy S6 Sales Disaster
While there are no confirmed numbers (and Samsungs comment is no comment), the reporting of the first month of sales on the Galaxy S6 is not what the South Korean manufacturer would have been hoping for. Ten million is not just on the low-end of expectations, its crashing through the floor and have a serious effect on the finances of the parent company.
Korean news agency Yonhap reports that it has taken a month for sales of the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge to reach 10M. Speaking to Yonhap a high-ranking Samsung official confirmed this figure for the first time. Trying to put a positive spin on it the official said: The sales of the Galaxy S6 series have already surpassed 10 million.
Notably the Galaxy S4 shipped 10M units in 27 days while the much criticised Galaxy S5 took 25 days to ship 10M units. In fact it was the lack of growth from the Galaxy S5 that inspired the radical reboot of the line seen in the S6es.
Consequently for combined sales of the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge to only pass 10M in a similar timeframe to the S5 and S4 represents a disastrous return. This is particularly true for the cheaper Galaxy S6 given Samsung has already confirmed demand for the Edge variant has been unexpectedly high.
All of which poses the obvious question: if Galaxy S6 Edge sales are performing above expectations, just how bad are Galaxy S6 sales?
Ill be keeping a close eye on the numbers around the Galaxy S6 family. Given the crash in profits and revenue during 2014, right now Samsungs Mobile Division looks to be a huge fiscal drag on the companys bottom line.
Is The Galaxy Note 5 Arriving Early?
Will Samsung reveal the Galaxy Note 5 ahead of the expected annual schedule? Traditionally Berlins IFA event has seen the South Korean company refresh its phablet line, but sources in the supply chain point to a potential earlier release.
Samsung is also apparently preparing to release its Galaxy Note 5 in late July, according to WhowiredKorea. It is claimed Samsung has already confirmed the final specification of the phablet and shown prototypes to global telecoms partners For Samsung bringing forward the Galaxy Note 5 launch would make sense. Samsung Pay is set to launch in July which would unite it with the new phablet and it would also give Samsung the drop on Android rivals expected to launch their devices at the IFA tech show which is held in Berlin in September.
Given Apples tendency to release devices in September, Samsung may also have thought this would give it the drop on the new iPhone 6S Plus. If I was looking for an easier answer, Id suggest Samsung want far more units available at launch than in previous years to get an immediate hit phone.
Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet Reviews
The Guardians Samuel Gibbs has been taking a look at a pre-release version of Sonys latest tablet. The Xperia Z4 Tablet doubles up as an ultraportable laptop with the keyboard cover, and continues to push the idea of a high-specification waterproof tablet:
The Xperia Z4 Tablet will be familiar to anyone who has laid eyes on a Sony smartphone or tablet made in the last couple of years: a thin, waterproof body, black bezels and a brilliant LCD screen.
The big change for the Z4 is the size of the housing. The screen is the same 10.1in, now quad HD with a pixel density of 299 pixels per inch, but the bezels around the screen have shrunk the tablet is 12mm shorter and 5mm narrower, making it one of the smallest 10in tablets available.
While the future of Sonys mobile division is still unclear, the hardware that is being manufactured continues to impress. Well have the Z4 Tablet to review on Forbes when it is released to the public.
Microsoft Office Preview App Released For Android
Following on from successful release of OneNote and Outlook, Microsoft has rolled out Office for Android as a preview application. Tony Bradley takes a look at the strategy behind Microsofts next encroachment into the Android world:
Initially Microsoft worked to just get some version of the Office apps out there for competing platforms like iOS and Android. The focus lately has been on ensuring the look and feel are consistent across all of the different devices and operating systems. Its nice to be able to use the same basic tools on different devices but users shouldnt have to re-learn how to use Word, Excel or PowerPoint depending on which device they choose. It should be simple and intuitive to use a Microsoft Office app no matter which platform its on.
Microsofts move to a cloud-based strategy has an impact on how the mobile Office app earns money. While it works as a viewer for free, the single sign-up to Office 365 will open up all the features in the application.
Microsoft has made the basic functionality of viewing and editing Microsoft Office files free for everyone. You must subscribe to Office 365, though, if you want the full range of features and capabilities. That shouldnt really be an issue for most peopleOffice 365 is a much better value than buying Microsoft Office the old-fashioned way.
Shenzhen-based manufacturer OnePlus is expected to release its second handset by the end of the year. Named the OnePlus 2, it appears that some handsets have browsed to the online benchmarking sites to see how they compare to the competition. 9to5Google has the details:
Rumors regarding the successor the popular OnePlus One smartphone began emerging earlier this year and now a mysterious device from the company has appeared in GeekBench test results. While the results dont reveal much, the show what is likely the OnePlus 2. The device appears to be running Android 5.1 and features an 8 core processor, likely in the 4+4 setup, clocked at 1.55GHz.
The processor is most likely the Snapdragon 810,which has been said to suffer from overheating issues since its launch. The test results show the device as carrying the model number A2001. The original OnePlus One carried the A0001 model number.