Samsung reshuffles mobile design team, puts ‘Midas’ in charge

Underperforming S5 spurs management changes

Tags: Samsung Electronics CompanySouth Korea
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Samsung reshuffles mobile design team, puts ‘Midas’ in charge Samsung suffers from a saturated premium market in smartphones and a low-to-mid-range segment rife with competition from cheap Chinese-made devices. (Getty Images)
By  Stephen McBride Published  May 8, 2014

Global smartphone market leader Samsung Electronics has reshuffled its mobile design team replacing its boss with a designer who earned the nickname "Midas" for his contribution to the Galaxy series, Reuters reported.

Forty-two-year-old Lee Min-hyouk, currently vice president for mobile design, will replace Chang Dong-hoon, a former professor who studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Chang will stay on as head of overall design strategy.

The Galaxy range has propelled Samsung to the top spot in global unit shipments for smartphones, but the latest flagship, the S5, has been slated for lack of groundbreaking features and for continuing to look "cheap".

The S5 was treated to a less lavish debut than its predecessor, the S4, and priced about 10% less. The company recently has reported a decline in quarterly profit margins. Samsung has tried to reign in component costs to mitigate what is expected to be the company's first annual profit decline in three years.

Samsung shares are almost 12% down on their peak of January 2013, because of investor concerns over a saturated premium market in smartphones and a low-to-mid-range segment that is rife with competition from cheap Chinese-made devices.

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