Samsung's Big Plans: Business Notebooks, Galaxy Player, Series 9
Samsung has a wide-ranging offensive planned for spring, with a variety of new devices and software seemingly designed not only to challenge Apple in the consumer market, but also tech titans such as Google and Lenovo.
At a March 16 event in New York City, Samsung executives suggested that these devices-including but not limited to televisions, laptops and smartphones-would combine into a comprehensive ecosystem. If that strategy succeeds with businesses and consumers, it would bring Samsung more onto the level of an Apple or Microsoft-albeit with mobile devices that run Google Android and PCs that use Windows.
Part of the strategy involves expanding the Galaxy ecosystem, which started with the Samsung Galaxy S line of Android smartphones before expanding later in 2010 to the 7-inch Galaxy Tab tablet. Samsung recently released a "teaser" for an upcoming event in Orlando, Fla., which pundits have widely interpreted as the unveiling of possibly larger Tabs; in the meantime, however, the company seems intent on pushing the 7-inch version as the vanguard of its tablet intentions.
Samsung is also producing two Galaxy Players, portable media devices that look and operate like an Android-based iPod Touch. Considering how sales of Apple's traditional iPod have fallen over the past several quarters, a phenomenon that company attributes to cannibalization by the iPhone, Samsung's decision to plunge into the portable media-player market aside from the Galaxy S is an interesting one. Perhaps the company feels that Apple's traditional stranglehold on that market segment needs a challenger.
Samsung used the New York City event to heavily promote its emphasis on 3D for consumer televisions, but the company apparently intends to export that technology to its more enterprise-centric initiatives. (The sheer amount of televisions on display, loaded with the app-heavy "Smart Hub," spoke to the company's desire to challenge Google TV and other "Web television" initiatives currently in the works.) Whether businesspeople will go for their presentations popping from the screen, "Avatar"-style, remains to be seen.
Whether 3D takes off as a business tool, Samsung unveiled three new laptop lines for both enterprises, and small and midsize businesses: the Series 2, Series 4 and Series 6 notebooks. All three lines feature Windows 7 Professional, Fast Start technology, which rapidly brings the devices into a work-ready mode from sleep, along with Intel Core processors and security measures such as a fingerprint sensor. Samsung also focused on anti-spill and ultra-rugged builds: all the better, apparently, to survive the slings and arrows of office life.
On the consumer side, Samsung's Series 9 notebooks offer light weight (2.89 lbs.) and slimness, paired with Windows 7 Professional and seven-hour battery life.
Whether Samsung succeeds on all fronts, one thing seems perfectly clear: The company wants a much bigger piece of other tech companies' pie.