Samsung Upgrade Program: you’ll have the latest and greatest with this subscription model

Apple introduced its upgrade program last year and according to previous data a nice share of iPhone users would be really interested in that kind of subscription model. According to Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster, as much as 50% of iPhone 6S buyers would choose the new program. The real results are still not that great, but we’ll probably see them next September, when the new iPhones are announced.

The idea could make a lot of sense for Apple and other big makers, and some sources are pointing out that Samsung is planning to launch a similar subscription model for its high-end phones. Customers will pay a monthly fee that will vary depending on the device, and will be able to get the latests phones -exchanging their current ones- as soon as they’re available. The model is pretty similar to what car companies do with leasing programs that allow to get newer models each year, for example.

Samsung’s upgrade program could be launched at its MWC 2016 event, but according to the current information the deployment of that program will be limited to South Korea initially. It’s unclear if that program will be associated to the integration of an embedded SIM (eSIM) that would make more comfortable for users to manage their devices and their data and voice plans -this has been discussed too with Apple’s Upgrade Program, but it seems unlikely at the present moment: carriers aren’t welcoming this kind of option and they are a key part of the current distribution strategy at Samsung.

Javier Pastor is a technology journalist that has been writing about tech since 1999. He started writing for PC Actual in Spain, the leading printed magazine in the country, and in 2006 started to write online. First as the Chief Editor for The Inquirer ES, and after that for MuyComputer until 2013. That year he became senior editor at Xataka, the leading tech news website in Spanish with over 5M uniques/month (Aug'15, comScore). Xataka is part of Weblogs SL, a blog network that gets over 40M uniques/month and that has a wide catalog of publications in Spanish. The Unshut is his new venture and allows him to express his opinions and thoughts on everything touched by technology, and follows what he has been doing at Incognitosis, his personal blog, since 2005.