Samsung unfolds AI engine to take bite out of Apple


After the unexpected success of its foldable ranges last year, Samsung has returned with the Galaxy Z Flip 6 and Fold 6 models, adding AI features to unlock everyday possibilities.

The new phones were unveiled at Wednesday’s Unpacked Event 2024 in Paris, where Samsung showcased AI-powered smartphones and wearables to support healthy lifestyles.

While the Unpacked Event highlighted Samsung’s new smart wearable Galaxy Ring, a sideline event in Bangkok put the Galaxy Z Flip 6 and Z Fold 6 through their paces.

Samsung has upgraded the battery, screen, and camera from the previous model and tossed in Galaxy AI, the company's suite of artificial intelligence features.

While some AI additions were introduced in the Galaxy S24 earlier this year, such as interpreter and generative photo editing, Wednesday’s event showcased the Composer and Sketch to Image features. The first helps users write and edit messages, emails, and documents, whereas the latter allows them to turn their sketches into finished creations. 

Samsung unfolds AI engine to take bite out of Apple

The Z Fold 6 unfolds like a book to reveal a large 7.6-inch display with a triple-lens camera on the back. One of the thinnest foldable phones on the market at just 12.1 millimetres thick when folded, it starts at 63,900 baht (about US$1,760). 

The Z Flip 6 has a familiar flip phone design but with a bendable screen. It starts at a more affordable price of 42,900 baht ($1,184).

Both phones will be in the shops from July 24.

The South Korean tech behemoth also introduced new products such as Galaxy Watch 7, Galaxy Watch Ultra, and redesigned wireless earphones Bud3 series.

Samsung unfolds AI engine to take bite out of Apple

Samsung's latest move reflects fierce competition in the global smartphone market amid a surprising expansion through increased demand from emerging markets. 

According to Canalys research, the global smartphone market increased 10% year on year in the first quarter of this year, reaching 296.2 million units. The market outperformed expectations, growing by double digits after 10 difficult quarters.

The surge was driven by brands introducing new model lines, coupled with stabilisation in emerging market economies. 

Although Samsung regained the global market lead by shipping 60 million units in the first quarter, it still trails Apple in the Thai market. 

Samsung unfolds AI engine to take bite out of Apple

According to Statcounter, Apple led Thailand's mobile market share in June with 32.57%, followed by Samsung (20.41%), then Oppo, Vivo, Xiaomi, and Realme. 

Samsung is relying on its AI development and early premium offerings to close the gap.

Its main competitor unveiled Apple Intelligence last month at the annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). Apple CEO Tim Cook said the firm’s long-awaited AI push addresses the need for privacy and personalisation, "beyond artificial intelligence" into "personal intelligence".

SkyQuest forecasts the mobile AI market will grow from $17 billion in 2023 to $114.36 billion by 2031, a compound annual growth rate of 26.9%.

Samsung and Apple’s new gadgets are the latest contributions to on-device AI, which uses AI algorithms directly on a device, eliminating the need for cloud-based processing. The market has grown significantly in recent years, owing to the increased adoption of AI-powered smartphones, smart speakers, wearables, and other IoT devices.

Samsung unfolds AI engine to take bite out of Apple Samsung unfolds AI engine to take bite out of Apple