Apple shares jump on Samsung woes


Apple's share price has leapt as problems grow for its smartphone rival Samsung.

Shares in Apple rose over 1.75 percent to US$116.06 (NZ$162.63).

This followed reports that Samsung had suspended production of the replacement version of the Galaxy Note 7 smartphone.

The official comment from Samsung is that it is "temporarily adjusting the production schedule" of the phone, following reports a number of the device have caught fire.

The announcement from Samsung came five weeks after it recalled 2.5 million of the phones and announced it was releasing a replacement version.

Then reports emerged of problems with the revamped phones.

Some phone companies like AT&T and T-Mobile said they would stop offering the replacement devices.

Samsung's share price closed 1.5 percent lower yesterday, after Samsung told the South Korean stock exchange that it was "temporarily adjusting the Galaxy Note 7 production schedule in order to take further steps to ensure quality and safety matters."

It is a blow to Samsung. The high-end Galaxy Note 7 was released to positive reviews in August. It has a longer battery life of over 24 hours, and wireless recharging.

But then reports started emerging of the batteries overheating in customers' phones.

Some investors are wondering whether Samsung might have rushed to pack too much into the phone, to get a jump on Apple which was preparing for the release of the iPhone 7.

Samsung's problems are a huge opportunity for Apple. Although Samsung is the world's biggest smartphone maker, Apple has an estimated 55 percent of the premium smartphone market.

Samsung had been hoping to gain ground with the Galaxy Note 7.

The problems for Samsung are also an opportunity for other companies like Huawei, Oppo, Xiaomi, LG, Lenovo or Google. The timing could not be better for Google, which is launching its Pixel phone.

The bigger problem for Samsung is the potential brand damage.

There is criticism that Samsung was too slow to react when customers first reported problems with the phone.

Samsung has promised an update on what is happening with the phones by the end of the month.


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