Instead, Samsung introduced phones with more colorful displays, fingerprint readers that hide under the screen, and a fun feature that lets you charge wireless headphones by placing them on the back of the phone. These are compelling, don't get me wrong, but why should someone with a Galaxy S8 with an already-nice display and facial recognition, want to spend another $850 or $999 for these upgrades? They're not compelling enough for consumers to spend this sort of money.
There's also a Samsung Galaxy S10 5G that promises faster data speeds, but it's not launching until the second quarter. We've also seen no reason why faster data speeds will drastically improve our experience outside downloads. When LTE phones came out, we could suddenly place video calls and stream music. That made them must-haves. What is 5G going to add that will make consumers really need a phone that supports it?
We saw a similar innovation lag with the new iPhones. The screens got bigger, the processors got faster, and the cameras were slightly improved. All great features! Millions of people still bought them, but fewer than historically and not in markets where Apple needs to make up ground, like China. If anything, all I heard were complaints about how the new iPhones cost too much.