Winners and losers: The best of Samsung in 2021 and Apple’s flirtation in China

In three weeks we’ll be in 2022, and before the year is over, I promised I’d make one last reference to one of the most sensational launches of the year. And today is the day! On the winner’s side, this week we have the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3. On the loser side, Apple’s secret contract with the Chinese government appears as the worst of the last few days.

But before we talk about the winners and losers of the week, I share below some highlights of NextPit‘s coverage in recent days:

Winner of the week: Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 is not the most powerful phone on the market, but it is certainly the most impressive. Among the smartphones I tested in 2021, the Z Flip 3 remains the device I admire most for its user experience. With an original design, more robust and functional than its predecessors, this week, the device has already received the official version of Android 12 and entered the list of bestsellers in South Korea.

Updates to the operating system have become part of Samsung’s trademark over the past year. So much so that after Google, the manufacturer was prominent in sending the One UI 4.0 update to its flagship series, such as Galaxy S21, Galaxy S20 and the new Z Flip 3 and Z Flip 3 Fold foldable smartphones. Those who are fans of the manufacturer know that it wasn’t always like this!

But the Z Flip 3’s achievements go beyond Android 12. In November, Samsung reported that sales of the device in South Korea, the home of the manufacturer, reached 1 million units sold. That made the device figure as the brand’s third big hit in the country, trailing only the Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy S8 as the fastest phones to hit the 1 million sales mark.

NextPit Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 test
The Galaxy Z Flip 3 is the smartphone my style asked to have! / © NextPit

Later that month, Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC) reported that Samsung reigns alone in the foldable smartphone category – in case anyone was still in doubt – and that the new Flip is the company’s standout here. Already this week, the device’s success has been back in the headlines of major tech sites because of guess what: sales performance.

And with this wave of good news related to the Galaxy Z Flip 3, the device deserves to be highlighted in this editorial. Not only because of its popularity, but also because Samsung is much more consistent with the actions dedicated to the series, with software support ahead of usual and investment in customization programs for the device.

Loser of the week: Apple and the secret deal in China

In recent years, China has become Apple’s second home, as after the US, the country is the second place where people buy the most iPhones in the world. Coincidence or not, this week, The Information released interviews and data from internal company documents that identify an alleged secret deal struck between Apple and the Chinese government worth $275 billion in 2016.

According to the publication, in order for Apple to gain more space in the Chinese market and put an end to the controversies involving its services, such as the App Store and iCloud, it would be necessary to invest in technological advancement of the country. This would include investment in advanced production technologies, use of Chinese suppliers and agreements with local universities of technology among other things.

Laura Hutton shutterstock 569993581
Tim Cook reportedly signed the deal on behalf of Apple in 2016 / © Laura Hutton /

Yes, China is one of the largest economies in the world and the rules are free market, however, the Chinese government is still a dictatorship and signing an investment contract in the country also means consenting to the decisions made by Xi Jinping. Besides, Apple is one of the biggest companies in the world and a secret deal to have a boost in local trade can also be seen as an incentive to maintain the company’s already much criticized monopoly.

(Un)fortunately, Huawei didn’t have the same luck with the US government!

And that’s all for today, folks! I wish you a great start of the week! But before I say goodbye, here’s the question: What did you think of this week’s picks? Share your opinion in the comments of this article.

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