Critics of Samsung design liken the company's products to soap vs. perfume.
"Samsung is like a fantastic soap maker," said Christian Lindholm, chief innovation officer of service design consultancy Fjord based in Finland. "Their products get you clean, lathers well. However, they do not know how to make perfumes, an industry where margins are significantly higher. Perfume is an experience. Perfume is meant to seduce, make you attractive and feel good. You love your perfume, but you like your soap."
Lee admits that he is not yet a match for Apple's famed designer Jonathan Ive; however, he believes that Samsung will some day produce breakthrough products.
"I might not be at (Ive's) level yet, but I believe Samsung will produce such iconic products one day. It's not just effort that makes it possible for a new product to be a massive hit. It also has to be timely, and technology should be ready to make a certain design a reality."
Lee says he takes allegations that Samsung "slavishly" copied Apple's iPad and iPhone personally.
"I've made thousands of sketches and hundreds of prototype products (for the Galaxy). Does that mean I was putting on a mock show for so long, pretending to be designing?"
"As a designer, there's an issue of dignity. (The Galaxy) is original from the beginning, and I'm the one who made it. It's a totally different product with a different design language and different technology infused."