Samsung has an enviable share of the smartphone market, some of the hottest hardware around, and global brand recognition; what more could a handset manufacturer ask for? According to a new report from the Wall Street Journal, Samsung is extremely interested in bolstering its software offerings, and isn’t about to balk at spending a whole lot of money to do so.
Internal documents reveal interest in snatching up firms working on mapping, social media, games, and search services. Those Samsung has investigated include Atari, Glympse, and Everything.me. Besides interest in acquiring established companies, Samsung reportedly has over a billion dollars set aside just for early investments in US startups.
While it’s great to hear about OEMs spending money to improve smartphone software, we can’t help but see shades of Tizen throughout all of this: that is, Samsung can seem more concerned with having control than delivering any real benefit to users. Certainly, we’re not talking about a lot of innovation here, but gathering existing resources under Samsung’s umbrella. For instance, this report mentions Samsung’s interest in video chat; does it really think it can offer something superior to Skype or Google Hangouts, or is all that matters that its solution is ultimately Samsung-branded?