50,000. That’s how many Galaxy Gear smartwatches Samsung has managed to sell in the two months since the device went on sale.
Word is that just 800 to 900 are sold daily across the globe.
On the face of it, this is a disaster for Samsung, which has bet heavily on the device and marketed it alongside the Galaxy Note 3 as one of 2013’s must-have pieces of mobile kit.
The Galaxy Gear has had a tough time of it since it was first launched.
Its lack of a flexible display seemed bizarre, especially as Samsung then launched its curved-screen Galaxy Round phone just a few weeks later.
The cost was, and is, prohibitive. And its awkward interface, average battery life and chunky design leave a lot to be desired.
But away from this, it’s hard to imagine Samsung being too disconsolate.
This is a tech company that has slain all before it in the past two years.
The Galaxy Gear represents a blip and one which it will doubtless be looking to fix in the very near future.
The device itself is the embodiment of a first-generation piece of kit that inspires only the hardcore.
But what it does is give Samsung a psychological advantage over its rivals (which in reality means only Apple).
Cupertino’s smartwatch is still a year away, with plans for an all-out assault apparently taking shape.
However, Samsung will be able to boast that it was one of the first to market with a next-gen smartwatch.
Its ad and marketing campaigns for the Galaxy Gear have been as much about brand and product awareness as they have about sales.
When it shows off its next Galaxy Gear, perhaps as soon as early 2014, you can bet it’ll come with a pared-down look, improved battery life and maybe even a flexible screen.
The original model will be seen as a stalking horse, leading the way for its successor to take the plaudits.
The same principle applies to the poor-selling Galaxy Round. Only 10,000 sold, sure. But still the first flexible phone on shelves.
This is all about Samsung creating an image of being at the forefront on innovation, stealing Apple’s crown and showing itself to be the primary player for bleeding edge, mainstream tech.
It might not make sense right now, but it this is all about the long game.
New versions of the Galaxy Gear and Galaxy Round will undoubtedly sell at lighting speed.