08/05/2014 06:35 BST | Updated 08/05/2014 08:59 BST

Samsung Galaxy S5 Designer Chang Dong-Hoon Replaced. Or Reassigned. Or Promoted?

Update: Samsung has released a statement clarifying Chang Dong-hoon's change in role.

The head designer of the Galaxy S5 has been replaced. Or is it reassigned? Or even promoted?

Confusion surrounded the future of Samsung execChang Dong-hoon on Thursday, after reports he had been replaced as the head of mobile design at the company following criticism of the Galaxy S5 smartphone.

But in a statement released Thursday afternoon, Samsung said he had been realigned, not resigned.

"Vice President Min-hyouk Lee has recently been promoted to Head of Design Team within the Mobile Communications Business of Samsung Electronics," the statement said.

"The realignment enables Executive Vice President Dong-hoon Chang to focus more on his role as Head of Design Strategy Team, the company's corporate design center which is responsible for long-term design strategy across all of Samsung Electronics' businesses, including Mobile Communications."

In either case, he will be replaced as the head of the mobile design team by Lee Min-Hyuk.

The S5 came in for some criticism for its plastic construction, something that has characterised the S-series but looks cheap when compared to the brushed aluminium of other smartphones such as the iPhone.

At the age of 38 in 2010, Lee was made the youngest senior executive at Samsung for his role in designing the flagship Galaxy series.