Samsung Smartphone Ban for Iranian Olympians!

Samsung Note 8 Olympic Edition
Samsung Note 8 Olympic Edition

Iranian and North Korean athletes at the Winter Olympics will not receive high-end Samsung smartphones handed out to their fellow competitors because of UN sanctions, organizers said Wednesday.

The games sponsor Samsung Electronics has donated 4,000 “Olympic edition” handsets of its flagship Galaxy Note 8 device to be distributed among athletes and IOC officials free of charge.

But a Pyeongchang organizing committee spokeswoman told AFP: “North Korean and Iranian athletes will be excluded because of existing UN sanctions” against the two countries.

The strange move against Iranians comes at a time when the mega-Korean company has official distribution centers and representative offices in cities across Iran.

Iran is a key market for Samsung electronics. The company has an important share of the home appliance market in the country of 80 million along with another South Korean company, LG.

Based on a report released by the GFK (Society for Consumer Research), Samsung had a 51% share of cellphone sales in Iran in the summer of 2017. LG with 13% was in third place while China’s Huawei with 14 percent was second.

GFK is Germany’s largest market research institute and the fourth largest market research organization in the world, after Nielsen Company, Kantar Group and Ipsos.

Iran has sent four skiers to the Winter Olympics. They will compete in two fields of Alpine skiing and cross-country skiing.

North Korea is sending 22 athletes to the Olympics. Only 10 of them will compete for their country at the games, with another 12 on the roster of a unified Korean women’s ice hockey team.

The 2018 Winter Olympics is scheduled for February 9-25 in Pyeongchang and competitions will be held in 15 sporting fields.

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints