Is This Apple Inc. (AAPL) Competitor Losing Its Way?

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The fact that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and its iPhone is facing strong competition in the smartphone market is no surprise at this point. There are many companies looking to grab onto a large piece of the market share pie, meaning that Cupertino is facing more pressure to perform than ever before.

At this point, however, there is one company that is really turning the screws on Apple: Samsung.

Apple Inc. (AAPL)With its Galaxy S4, the company has been able to compete one on one with Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), and in many cases come out on top.

However, things are beginning to look up for Apple. Not only is the company getting ready to push its next generation iPhone to market, but there are signs that Samsung and its newest creation are beginning to lose steam. This could mean big things for Apple in the near future, as 2013 continues to wear on and the holiday season closes in.

With sales estimates for the S4 being cut by roughly 30 percent, there is reason to believe that the shine is beginning to wear off the S4. This doesn’t mean that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is going to have things easy moving forward, but any competitive advantage is one that Cupertino is sure to enjoy.

Byun Hanjoon, an analyst at KB Investment & Securities, was quoted by Reuters as saying:

“I’d say most forecasters including myself had this conviction that they’ll outperform again – because it’s Samsung. They had beaten expectations before, which led many to believe they are bound to excel again with the S4.”

With all this in mind, some are wondering if the situation surrounding Samsung and its S4 is as bad as it sounds. After all, the company sold roughly 10 million units within the first month of its release. This is more than the previous version, the S3.

The problem with this is that the high end smartphone segment is beginning to die off, especially in Europe. This could lead to Samsung taking a big hit, and may also be a large reason why Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is considering the addition of a lower cost device.

According to Thomson Reuters StarMine, 17 of 43 analysts have downgraded Samsung over the last month. Whether or not this means anything for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has yet to be seen, but it is a story worth keeping an eye on.

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