According to the Korea Herald, Samsung could be pushing the Galaxy S5 out earlier than initially thought – releasing instead on March 27th (that’s in two days time) rather than on April 11th, as everyone expected.
The reason for the possible change is an unusual one: their hands are being forced by the Korean telecoms regulator. Apparently South Korea’s largest phone network, SK Telecom, was involved in an “illegal subsidy war” – and as punishment the government are forcing them to suspend business briefly.
This would certainly be problematic for Samsung, who are based in South Korea, who would ideally be looking for a massive marketing push when the phone is released in April. The rumour is to get around this trading ban, the release could be pushed up to two days time. Presumably the thought of being able to look out of the office window and see people in South Korea not being able to buy S5s has given this South Korea ruling extra significance to Samsung.
What makes this interesting for us here in the UK and the rest of the world is the potential impact on us. According to the Korea Herald an “inside source” suggested the worldwide release could also be affected. Presumably Samsung are going to want a big, glitzy, worldwide launch with a big promotional push – releasing only in Korea a week early would mean that this message gets blurred, and crucially, any negative reviews in that first week could taint the wider launch. So given the physical hardware is probably already sitting in distribution centres waiting to be put on the shelves, it would make sense to start selling early too.
So could we be playing with the Galaxy S5 in a couple of days? We’ll keep you posted.