Samsung Offers Galaxy S to Unhappy iPhone Owners

Samsung is trying a new approach to get its Galaxy S into potential customer’s hands: They’re giving the smartphone away for free to people that complain about their iPhone on Twitter. The company is trying out the campaign so iPhone users can see how the Android-based Galaxy S compares to their current smartphone.

Samsung’s Twitter stream includes several tweets like “thanks for your tweet – want to try out our new Samsung Galaxy S? We’ll send you one to test against your current handset,” and “Hi, your Samsung #GalaxyS is on the way and you should get it this afternoon!”

While some Twitter users assumed the free phone offer was a scam, Samsung confirmed it’s legit.

“Recently there has been a real increase in online activity from consumers dissatisfied with some of our competitors’ products,” Samsung representatives told CNN. “We decided to contact a cross section of individuals to offer them a free Samsung Galaxy S as a replacement, as we’re confident that once people have the phone in their hands, they’ll see how impressive it is for themselves.”

The free phone offers follow concerns over iPhone 4 signal strength issues and a press conference where Apple CEO Steve Jobs said most smartphones are susceptible to the same bar drops when held so the antennas are obscured by your hand.

Samsung’s marketing move could help increase its slice of the smartphone pie, but probably not by much. According to Apple’s data, less than one percent of iPhone 4 customers have contacted the company over antenna-related issues, and less than two percent of iPhone 4 buyers have returned their smartphone.