Samsung Planning Smartphone-Leasing Program

South Korean electronics giant Samsung is reportedly borrowing a tactic from rival Apple's mobile phone strategy and is planning to roll out a program to lease its flagship Galaxy smartphones to consumers in the United States.

Samsung will launch a program similar to the one Apple announced several weeks ago, according to an industry executive with knowledge of SamsungEUs plans. According to a report in Forbes, Samsung could launch the leasing program by the end of the year at the latest.

Earlier this month, Apple released the newest versions of its premium smartphones, the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, and included new ways for consumers to get their hands on the phones. Aside from upgrade plans, Apple has partnerships with mobile carriers and the companyEUs traditional carrier contracts create several more affordable ways for consumers to own iPhones. AppleEUs installment plan, promises customers new iPhone models every year that they're launched. It appears that Samsung has something similar in mind.

Follow the Leader

We reached out to Patrick Moorhead, founder and principal analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy, who told us the strategy, if it comes to pass, is yet another example of Samsung following Apple.

"ItEUs a good thing for consumers, but only those who want to be wed to Samsung for the long-term," said Moorhead. "Each quarter, there appears to be less and less of those who are buying into Samsung. It would be a lot more interesting if Samsung were to extend this to their other franchises in, letEUs say, TVs."

AppleEUs move -- and SamsungEUs eagerness to follow suit -- is another indication that the smartphone industry is moving away from the traditional long-term contract that was once an integral part of phone ownership. Now, many smartphone manufacturers prefer to have consumers purchase directly from them or from authorized retailers.

Changing Leases

The...

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