Apple 2.0

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Smashing Apple: Is Strategy Analytics in Samsung's pocket?

August 2, 2013: 9:53 AM ET

The reliability of its market research has been called into question twice in the past week.

From the company's website/

From SA's website.

Seoul's Gangnam building

Seoul's Gangnam building

FORTUNE -- It may be no accident that Samsung and Strategy Analytics both chose to locate their Korean headquarters in Seoul's prestigious Gangnam Building.

The Boston-based research and consulting firm does not advertise its roster of clients, except to say that they include "13 of the 15 top handset vendors."

But based on the number of reports it has issued recently that cast Samsung in an unusually good light and Apple in a bad, it's not hard to guess who is paying them and who is not.

Now the objectivity of the market research on which those reports were based -- market research that is widely cited in the tech press -- has been called into question.

Twice in the past week, AppleInsider's Daniel Eran Dilger has published detailed analyses of Strategy Analytics' data that strongly suggest a pro-Samsung bias.

  • The first questioned SA's report that Samsung had "dethroned Apple" in mobile profits.
  • The second accused SA of "rewriting history" to prove that the iPad's share of the tablet market had shriveled to 28.3%.

The latter report is especially damning because Strategy Analytics' seems to have inflated its earlier estimates of Android tablet sales by more than 11 million units.

Strategy Analytics has not returned our request for comment.

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About This Author
Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for Fortune.com.

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