I can't imagine there's too much warm fuzzy feeling inside Samsung for senior vice-president Lee Don-Joo right now.
In case you missed it, he was quoted in the wake of the iPad 2's announcement last week as saying Sammy needed to take a long hard look at the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and address its “inadequacies”, and probably change its pricing strategy too.
Now unless the chap was mis-quoted – or mis-translated – he's just taken what is a very good tablet and pretty much written off its chances of doing anything at all unless Samsung has a serious back-to-basics rethink. Yes, he came out the next day and toed the company line, effectively retracting his comments, but the damage had already been done by then. Talk about drinking the opposition's Kool-aid – even Apple wouldn't diss a rival product like that.
What bothers me is just how readily the opposition seem ready to lie down whenever Apple releases a new product. A month ago Android Honeycomb was the best thing since sliced bread, and whatever Apple had up its sleeve would have to be pretty special to stop the balance of tablet power shifting in Android's direction.
Now we find out that Apple doesn't actually have a huge amount up its sleeve at all, and yet here we have a senior corporate big-wig caught in the Apple PR glare like a rabbit in the headlights: “so THIN, so CHEAP... can't compete...”
Come on, guys. Instead of playing lip service to a product whose main appeal is an intangible one, how about sticking to your guns and reminding everyone that the reason the Galaxy Tab 10.1 is bulkier and more expensive is that it has more technology packed inside?
Apple's greatest strength is its ability to influence the public conversation to create desire for its products. So that tablet conversation is about lifestyle, convenience and aesthetic appeal – because those are the iPad's strengths.
But it's not the only discussion that can be had. How about productivity, versatility and openness? Yes, fair enough, the public probably prefers the former – or thinks they do – but you could at least try a little harder.
Samsung has a great range of products across a huge portfolio, many of them going head-to-head with rivals from Apple and able to make a good fight of it. But if the company's own top brass doesn't believe in them, we should the rest of us?