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Samsung woos developers to its vision of a multiscreen future

by Michael Singer

October 29 2013

Samsung's Dr. Won-Pyo Hong outline's the company's multiscreen approach to its consumer devices
Samsung's Dr. Won-Pyo Hong outline's the company's multiscreen approach to its consumer devices

The company has released five new software development kits (SDKs) in hopes that your smartphone will talk more with your tablet and your television.

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. -- While convergence between consumer electronics devices is not new, Samsung is spending a lot of effort in its two-day developer conference here preaching and listening to software developers about all the financial possibilities that convergence can offer.

With more than 1,500 people in attendance, Dr. Won-Pyo Hong, President and head of the Samsung Electronics Media Solution Center took little time to identify the benefits Samsung has to offer in the way of connected devices.

“We are clearing a path for creative developers who want to participate in this multiscreen future, and the SDKs we are releasing today give them a way to start creating for multiscreen, and take advantage of our leadership across so many screens,” Hong said in his introductory keynote.

Many of the attendees TabTimes spoke with were looking to see how Samsung could differentiate its own offerings against a robust Android ecosystem, which has already tackled issues around synchronizing devices large and small.

KNOX three times on the ceiling

One feather in Samsung’s developer cap is its security protocols, known as KNOX. The US Department of Defense-certified software acts as a device control within the hardware that runs even deeper than the operating system. This allows organizations to protect, reset, or even wipe clean lost or stolen tablets and smartphones. Samsung said the security software is already included in its  Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Note 10.1 tablets as well as its Galaxy S3 and S4 smartphones.

Other SDKs Samsung is announcing include a more streamlined Samsung Mobile SDK, Samsung Multiscreen SDK, Samsung Multiscreen Gaming SDK, and a Samsung Smart TV SDK.

While the conference is Samsung’s way of promoting its hardware alongside third-party software developers and publishers such as eBay, and Pandora, many demonstrations focused on the relationship between smartphones and televisions.  

The desire for market leadership is strong within Samsung. The South Korean electronics manufacturer sells more devices worldwide than Apple or Google (250 million PC, tablets, and smartphones including two televisions per second, according to the company). However, it is continually looking over its shoulder with iOS products dominating US and other geographies. Samsung is also looking to emerge from the shadow of Google, which controls the majority of applications purchased for the Android operating system.

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