Smartphones are getting ever more colorful with phone materials becoming diversified and paint and metalizing technologies advancing.
Phone manufacturers are now using color as a key marketing tool to distinguish their products over others. "A smartphone is increasingly regarded as a fashion item, so color has become a very important means of marketing," an industry insider said
Samsung plans to launch its upcoming flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S8, which will be unveiled at the end of this month, in six or seven different colors.
"We have decided on which colors to use for the Galaxy S8 after a consumer survey and process test," a Samsung executive said Tuesday. "We will release three or four colors first, including black and white, and add more to the series depending on how the market reacts."
Samsung is reportedly ready to release the first purple handset in the Galaxy series with the S8.
Samsung has enjoyed success in color marketing. When the Galaxy S7 Note was discontinued last year due to combustible batteries, it added blue coral and black pearl colors to the Galaxy S7 Edge lineup. The blue coral models sold out, and sales of the S7 series are estimated to be over 70 million sets.
"When our first Galaxy S came out in 2010, there was only one color and that was black. But since then, we have introduced more than five different colors," a staffer at Samsung said.
Apple also has been adding unique colors to its iPhone lineup -- rose gold, space grey and jet black. To rival the Galaxy S8, Apple is reportedly preparing to release a red iPhone 7.
LG's latest G6 flagship smartphone came in three different colors. "We are trying to avoid extreme colors as there can be a lot of likes and dislikes," a staffer at LG said.
China's Huawei released its latest flagship P10 smartphone in eight colors.
Smartphone makers are betting more on color as more materials other than plastic, including aluminium and toughened glass, are available for the exterior of phones, making protective cases less popular.
Preference varies according to region and gender. Light pastel colors are popular in Europe, whereas gold and black are popular in Asia. Women are more prone to be picky. "Smartphones are something that people carry at all times, and many women treat them as part of their fashion. So we rely more and more on consumer preference surveys," a Samsung staffer said.
Clockwise from left, Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, Huawei's P10 and Apple iPhone 7