Why People Think Samsung Phones Aren’t as Hip as iPhones

Despite all their merits, Samsung flagships don’t seem to enjoy the same popularity as Apple’s iPhones. They’re pretty ubiquitous, of course. But many people think Samsung phones aren’t as hip as iPhones for a variety of reasons. Some of those reasons make sense to just about anybody who’s familiar with the smartphone world. But others are pretty incomprehensible if you like Samsung devices or are a fan of Android.

Nonetheless, the reasons why people choose one brand of phone over another are pretty interesting. If you’re curious about why Samsung phones just aren’t as cool as iPhones no matter how many great features and impressive components Samsung adds, read on. These are some of the reasons why people still think a Samsung phone just isn’t as cool as an iPhone.

1. iPhones are more recognizable than Samsung phones

Woman holding an iPhone6S

It’s easier to recognize an iPhone from other smartphones | iStock.com/Prykhodov

Not everybody follows the news on the latest smartphone releases. And for people who don’t, the array of smartphones available at Best Buy or at a carrier’s store can be a pretty confusing lineup. But Apple’s ubiquitous advertising guarantees even people who are pretty indifferent to smartphones know what an iPhone looks like. They see iPhones everywhere and assume iPhones are more hip than whatever Samsung is offering. 

2. People hear about Apple more often than they hear about Samsung

Female hands holding new iPhone 6s

Apple is heard about more often than Samsung is | iStock.com/RossHelen

Many people assume the brand they’ve heard the most about is the best choice. And for the average person who doesn’t seek out information about gadgets and tech companies, the brand they hear mentioned the most is probably Apple. Sure, Samsung makes headlines. (And it feels like we’ll never hear the end of the Galaxy Note 7 debacle.) But for every article, column, and blog post U.S. outlets run about Samsung, there seem to be at least 10 about Apple.

3. Apple only makes high-end devices

A customer takes a selfie with a new iPhone 7

All of Apple’s devices are high-end | Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Apple rather famously aims for the high end of the smartphone market and ignores the rest of it. Some people interpret that choice to mean Apple’s iPhone lineup is better than Samsung’s smartphone lineup, which includes a variety of mid-range and lower-end smartphones both for the U.S. and for other markets around the world. The reality is that Samsung’s high-end phones compare pretty favorably to iPhones and are better than iPhones in some regards. 

4. Samsung’s smartphone lineup can get a little confusing

A woman tests the new iPhone 7

Samsung’s lineup isn’t as clear as Apple’s | Johannes Eisele/Getty Images

Even for people who follow the Samsung rumor mill pretty closely, Samsung’s ever-changing smartphone lineup can get pretty confusing. There are high-end flagship phones, which are pretty easy to keep track of. But the company also introduces a dizzying array of mid-range phones and low-end devices each year. Some of those devices are available in the U.S. shortly after their launch, and others will make their way stateside in the subsequent months. But many Samsung devices aren’t offered in the U.S., and that can get pretty confusing pretty quickly.

5. Some people want a gadget that works out of the box, not one that requires customization

An Apple employee prepares Apple iPhone 7 phones

iPhones work great right out of the box, but so do Samsung phones | Sean Gallup/Getty Images

People believe plenty of outdated myths and misconceptions about Android and iOS and how the two compare. So it’s hardly surprising that many people think their only option if they don’t want to spend a lot of time customizing a new device is to go with an iPhone. Of course, that assumption issues the point. And though you can customize an Android device, you don’t have to. But many people like the idea of a phone that won’t take more than a few minutes to set up. For those people, an iPhone seems like a better choice than a Samsung phone. 

6. The App Store can look more polished than the Google Play Store

Crowds wait in anticipation for the release of the iPhone 7 at Apple Store

The App Store has a polished, clean look | Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

Great apps from independent developers and titles from major development studios alike are available for both iOS and Android. And with a bit of digging (or Googling), you can unearth truly awesome apps for both platforms. But if you’re looking for an app store with a hip design and lots of visually appealing titles, the iOS App Store is likely to win out over the Play Store. Throw in some enduring misconceptions, like the myth that malware-infected apps don’t make their way to the App Store, and you may understand why people prefer the app store on an iPhone to the app store on a Samsung phone. 

7. Americans like the idea of a smartphone designed in the United States

An apple store

Apple is an American company | Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP/Getty Images

If you’re wondering why Americans are all about iPhones instead of Samsung phones, one reason you may not have considered is the fact that Apple is an American company. iPhones aren’t made in the U.S., of course. But plenty of people seem to like the idea that their iPhones were designed by an American company. Most people aren’t even sure where Samsung is headquartered or where it manufactures its devices. But they do know that Apple is based in Cupertino, California, and they seem to like knowing that.

8. Most people aren’t comparing pure specifications

iPhone 7

Samsung phones may have better specs than iPhones | George Frey/Getty Images

Staunch Samsung devotees argue iPhones rarely beat Samsung flagships and other high-end Android phones when it comes to specifications. That’s usually pretty true. But when they’re considering a smartphone purchase, most people don’t sit down and make a chart to compare the specifications of each of their top choices. Most people aren’t looking for the very best numbers. So it probably doesn’t matter to them that a Samsung flagship may be better than an iPhone when it comes to specifications.

9. Apple has told Americans what to think about Samsung

man visits the Apple Store

Apple hurt Samsung’s reputation | Kena Betancur/Getty Images

Tech companies are constantly suing each other for grievances big and small. And not every patent battle really turns out to be worth fighting. But by constantly targeting Asian smartphone manufacturers like Samsung with patent infringement lawsuits, Apple has pretty effectively told Americans what to think about Samsung. Plenty of Americans now think that Samsung and others simply produce iPhone clones. The fact that this isn’t true doesn’t matter. It still hurts Samsung’s reputation.