Exclusive: Samsung ideally placed to drive growth in IoT


SmartThings only “scratching surface” of potential says vice president of IT and mobile

Samsung will drive the next wave of growth in the industry through its connected home portfolio, which will make everyone “sit up and take notice” of what it is doing.

Those are the ambitious comments from Samsung UK and Ireland vice president of IT and mobile Conor Pierce, who spoke exclusively to Mobile News about the manufacturer’s growth this year and plans for the coming months.

Hub & Sensors On WoodAt the annual IFA trade show in Berlin last month, Samsung showcased its new range of connected devices and Internet of Things services (see issue 597), with products ranging from washing machines, sleep
sensors, home security systems, cars and more.

Pierce claims Samsung has gone from “strength-to-strength” following his appointment in February and since the release of the flagship Galaxy S6 and S6 edge smartphones in April, as well as the Galaxy S6 edge+ last month, it has been building “really powerful support and momentum”.

He added that in the UK (without revealing figures), it is currently seeing record retention numbers, a record number of people moving from rival operating systems to Samsung and a “very high net promoter score”, particularly between the ages of 18 and 24, with those that are switching having a higher recommendation rate than they had before.

Scratching the surface

With that platform and momentum building apace, Pierce said Samsung is “only scratching the surface” with what it can bring to market.

Despite the inevitable difficulties in raising consumer awareness around the connected home and Internet of Things, Samsung is ideally placed to be the first to make that a reality, helped not only by its vast range of smartphones, tablets and smartwatches, as well as its own portfolio of home appliances such as TVs, refrigerators, washing machines, dishwashers, cookers and heating systems.

“This next wave of growth is going to be led by Samsung. This will make the industry sit up and take notice of what we are doing. I’m really proud of what we’ve delivered so far but there is so much more we can do. It’s not just about bringing great devices to market, but also bringing the market to the next phase, and that is the connected home/smart society,” Pierce said.

“Our first generation of SmartThings has been really well received, but we are only scratching the surface with what we can bring. All our partners want to work with us to see how we can make this elusive Internet of Things a reality. In terms of the level of awareness, we need to dilute that and bring it to life in a very compelling way, so you walk into a store and see what a connected home is like.

watch2“We need to find a way to bring a very compelling proposition and we are doing that through SmartThings, which is like the common thread across our entire portfolio. You can see the way we are engaging with partners and having much longer-term and detailed strategic conversations about the connected home in terms of how
we can act.

“We have really powerful support and momentum. The power, scale and ambition of Samsung is overwhelmingly positive, and partners recognise that. If there is one company that can drive this change, it is Samsung.”

For the full interview, see Mobile News issue 599, out on October 12.