Businesses are now starting thinking beyond the traditional desktop computer, and with the evolution of cloud computing. Connected devices, which include smartphones, tablets, electronic readers, game consoles, MP3 players and Smart TVs to name a few, are now talk of the town. Everyone wants these devices, to make life easier and more productive. Consumer electronics manufacturers, including Samsung, are beginning to recognize this, developing end-to-end connected devices in order to deliver an exciting ecosystem for this sector’s future.
A major component of Samsung’s connected devices approach is the connected smart TV. Smart TVs, along with television viewing, offers access to a range of services with network connectivity. By 2015, 47 percent of flat panel TVs shipped will have connected features on it.
At IFA this week Samsung was found demonstrating Smart TV and TV apps. Most of the TV apps include popular services like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Facebook and Picasa. By next year, Samsung plans to integrate its smartphone and tablets as a connected medium to its Smart TV range of television sets. Samsung is also developing proprietary app stores. TV App Agency, a London based developer of Apps for internet connected TV’s and devices, is working with Rightmove to develop a real estate App for Samsung connected TV sets. The app will allow Smart TV viewers to search and view property pictures, floor plans, details and maps. “More choice without more complications,” as Youghee Lee, Samsungs VP of Global Mobile Communications Business, said on Samsung’s connected devices strategy.
The company is also introducing a new category of products, including its latest smartphone. The Galaxy Note features a mammoth 5.3-inch Super AMOLED display and a stylus. Samsung is also launching its next Wave series of smartphones, the Samsung Wave 3, which run on Samsung’s own Bada operating system. The Bada operating system has failed to take off and it is the Android devices that were the ones that helped Samsung make their mark in the current mobile market.
Samsung strategy is to go for cross-platform support, and according to the recent report from DigiTimes, Samsung is planning to take HP’s webOS business to make it a strong multi-level player in connected devices platforms to compete against Apple. A few days back Samsung denied theories of the company acquiring webOS. A team-up here would be seen as an integration of hardware and software for Samsung’s devices and building itself to become less dependent on Google’s Android operating system following Google’s acquisition of Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion, and string of lawsuits targeting Android manufacturers.
Samsung’s adaption of connected devices is closely modeled after Apple’s model. Apple currently leads both the smartphone and tablet market in many regards. And Apple’s own iOS television set with Apple TV, iTunes, gaming console and support for apps is an ideal solution for all the music, media, movie and other entertainment needs that make up current personal cloud demand. Should Samsung create a platform integrating aspects of Bada, Android and webOS, it could have a strong and connected iOS alternative.