There’s no debate that iPhone sales dominated the smart phone category for many years. Samsung’s Galaxy S3 overtook Apple’s iPhone 4S to become the world’s best-selling smartphone model for the first time ever in the third quarter of 2012, according to new research by Strategy Analytics.
The Galaxy captured an 11 percent share in the smart phone category with a whopping 18 million units sold worldwide compared to the iPhones 16.2 million units of the 4s sold. This spells great news for Samsung and retailers but bad news for Apple, whose profit margins are considerably lower for retailers who get a better deal selling non-apple devices. The return on investment for the iPhone is nine months compared to six months for a typical Android device.
Consequently, some mobile carriers have been training their sales associates to push non-apple devices, but one Sprint representative went above and beyond the call of duty by insulting customers looking to purchase an iPhone.
The story, posted on the BGR.com blog, went something like this:
When the customer told the Sprint representative that he wanted to get an older iPhone 4 for free as part of his upgrade, the representative called the device “a piece of s—” that breaks too easily and is too small for many users. Instead, the salesman recommended that the customer by a Samsung (005930) Galaxy S III. When the customer again refused, the salesman took things a step farther and told the man that his fingers were simply too fat to use the iPhone and that he’d need a larger screen to use a smartphone properly.
It goes without mentioning that the customer did not purchase a phone that day and instead stormed out of the sore. These new sales tactics aren’t going to go over well with customers. Perhaps Sprint and other carriers may want to try a different approach or they may see a decline in overall sales if they continue to spew insults to their customers.