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But in a cruel plot twist no plans for a U.S. launch have been announced for the low volume Limited Edition ... yet

Combine smartphones and comic books and what do you get?  The Galaxy S6 Edge Iron Man Limited Edition from Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd.'s (KRX:005930) (KRX:005935).  Samsung unveiled the device online, but left one very big question unanswered.  But before I get to that's let's look at the numbers behind this union.

On the comic end is Marvel Studios, the movie-making wing of Walt Disney Comp.'s (DIS) comic book juggernaut Marvel Comics.  Marvel Studios and Disney currently own the record for the most film's most lucrative launch of 2015 so far, in terms of box office revenue.

Samsung Iron Man Edition

The second chapter in the Avengers saga, Avengers: Age of Ultron has raked in $1.28B USD since launching on May 1.  Currently the sixth highest grossing movie of all time -- not adjusting for inflation -- the second Avengers flick may yet surpass its 2012 predecessor's $1.518B USD total.  (It will need to pull in $1.82B USD to move into tenth place in the inflation adjusted list of highest global grossers of all time; Disney's 1939 animated masterpiece Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs currently holds that spot.)  Whether or not it passes those two potential milestones, it's clear that people all over the world love the Avengers.

Avengers Age of Ultron
The Hulkbuster armor alone is worth the cost of admission... [Image Source: YouTube]

Samsung is brewing a May blockbuster of its own, with the the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge flagship smartphones.  Featuring a bold new design, Samsung also add an industry-first 14 nanometer octacore 64-bit ARM processor that it designed first-hand.  

In fact, in spite of its controversial decision to forgo external microSD storage, teardowns have indicated that the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge pack the industry's most expensive spec sheet.  IHS estimated that compared to the Apple, Inc. (AAPL) iPhone 6 Plus -- often cited as a premium market setter -- the GS6 goes a step above.

At launch last Sept. 2014 it cost Apple around $250 USD to produce 64 GB iPhone 6 Plus models.  By contrast analyses of the 64 GB Galaxy S6 on Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ), indicated Samsung's paying $290 GB for its industry leading hardware and the radical new "Project Zero" design reboot.  The key difference?  At launch the 64 GB iPhone 6 Plus was sold for $849 USD off-contract, while Samsung is only asking $699 US for the iPhone 6 Plus.  In other words, it's give internals that are higher end than Apple's at a price point that matches its major Android rivals.

Samsung expects the GS6 to erase the disappointment of the lackluster Galaxy S5.  In fact it expects to sell 70 million Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge in 2015.



A tiny fraction of the latter device's volume will be comprised of the eye-catching new Iron Man Edition.  The device comes in a collector's edition box and comes with an Iron Man themed customer charger.  It packs an appropriate red and gold color scheme and finishes things off with a clear case screen protecter emblazened with Iron Man art.  Samsung is pulling out all the stops, even reportedly retrofitting parts of its UI (e.g. the Dialer app) in a special red and gold UI theme.

GS6 Iron Man Edition

The merchandising tangle is not exactly strong in the subtlety department, but it's also undeniably cool (if you're a comics fan).  Samsung Mobile's global marketing VP,  Younghee Lee, boasts:

We are excited to be able to offer our world-class Galaxy S6 edge smartphone designed especially for Iron Man fans through our continued collaboration with Marvel.  The limited edition Iron Man Galaxy S6 edge embodies the power of the iconic Avenger with a dual-curved edge design and advanced features that will provide Marvel fans with the ultimate entertainment experience.

Yea, yea you have a cool Iron Man phone, no need to brag.  Just tell us where we can get it.

Iron Man Edition

But therein lies the cloud to this silver lining.  There's no word of a U.S. launch yet.  In its press release Samsung Mobile writes:

The Galaxy S6 edge Iron Man Limited Edition will be available in Korea on May 27, 2015, with China and Hong Kong in June.

According to the UK's DailyMail, only 1,000 units will be created, so it's unclear whether U.S. buyers will even stand a chance of getting their hands on one.  The South Korean run -- priced at KR¥1.19M  (~$1070 USD) -- is already sold out.  Price on the Hong Kong and Chinese models has not yet been announced.

Samsung Iron Man Edition -- sold out

I've been poking around the Samsung Mobile USA's Twitter Inc. (TWTR), Google+ (Google Inc. (GOOG)), and Facebook, Inc. (FB) profiles and there's nary a sign or word about this device.  So unless you hear otherwise, if you're a customer in the U.S. expect to pay a pretty penny to get your hands one one of the Asian market units.  Then again, Iron Man isn't exactly a poor man's superhero.  If you want this rare device you may indeed have to be ready to spend like a Stark to make it happen.

(This isn't the first time Samsung and Disney's Marvel teamed up.  The pair announced a product partnership last June.)

Sources: Samsung Mobile [press release], [store]





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