Last week at CES, Tim Baxter, President and CEO of Samsung Electronics North America, spoke with Shelly Palmer, CEO of The Palmer Group, on the technological mega-trends facing society today and their impact on consumer behavior. The invitation-only gathering brought together 400 leaders in technology, media, entertainment, marketing, government and finance and also featured talks with Bob Carpenter, President and CEO of GS1 US and David Sapin, PwC’s U.S. Risk and Regulatory Leader.
Palmer opened the conversation applauding Samsung’s “can’t miss” installations on the trade floor, referring to the “Samsung City” experience, giving Baxter the opportunity to explain Samsung’s new approach to the conference this year. “We’re doing it a bit different this year to show how our products work together to deliver seamless experiences that simplify consumers’ lives. Our focus is to create meaningful use cases for consumers,” explained Baxter, adding that with the Internet of Things (IoT), and powered by the company’s intelligent assistant Bixby, Samsung’s goal was to demonstrate how the latest devices work together to create one seamless, multi-device experience for consumers.
For example, with the SmartThings app, slated to launch this Spring, consumers will be able to control their intelligent devices using just one app. The open IoT platform will allow users to control more than 370 certified devices from more than 40 brands to automate daily activities such as turning off your lights or the heat when you’re not at home.
Palmer agreed that the Samsung activations at CES effectively tackled this mission of demonstrating the convenience of a multi-device experience. Baxter elaborated on how Samsung is uniquely equipped to rapidly scale and provide accessible, affordable and innovative IoT services to consumers. “That’s part of what excited us most about the Harman acquisition last year. From the connected car, office and home, we’re investing to bring together the billions of Samsung and SmartThings partner devices into one ecosystem, controlled with a single app, powered by a unified cloud and driven by Bixby.”
Based on the company’s vision outlined at CES 2018, Baxter emphasized Samsung’s mission to work with partners to help make IoT as easy as flipping a switch for consumers and reiterated that by 2020, all Samsung connected devices will be IoT ready and intelligent. “We’re continuing to invest in strategic partnerships that will shape the IoT industry on a global level and we invite partners, network and service providers to leverage the power of the Samsung Developer Kit [SDK] to join us in creating new solutions to provide tangible benefit to augment the everyday for consumers.”
To conclude their discussion, Palmer inquired as to “what’s next” for Samsung in the VR and mobile worlds. Baxter pointed out how, due to recent acquisitions, consumers have seen Samsung shift from a hardware company to a connected solutions company and explained the company is moving in the same direction when it comes to hardware as well as new services. He noted that this is especially exciting with technologies such as augmented reality, which has the potential to provide novel experiences that will enable consumers to use Galaxy smartphones in new ways.