by Anton Shilov
09/27/2012 | 11:46 AM
Samsung Electronics is already the world's largest maker of smartphones thanks to its extensive lineup of devices. But Samsung does not want to stop there, it wants to become the maker of the world's best smartphones, carefully matching software and hardware capabilities. In a bid to do that, the company plans to acquire software makers. The first goal that the company set for itself is to grow its Music Hub to become one of the top music services on the planet.
"The message we are getting from the top is to raise software capability, and buy rather than build, if needed. Our focus on software is primarily aimed at driving hardware sales, rather than making money. We have a full range of handsets in so many countries, and, to better market our products, we thought it's better to start our own software business," Kang Tae-jin, senior vice president of Samsung's media solution center, said in an interview with Reuters news-agency.
Back in May, Samsung took over online music service mSpot and created its Music Hub service to compete against Android's Music Player, Apple's iTunes and Amazon's Cloud Player. Music Hub is currently available on Samsung's Galaxy S III smartphones includes paid digital downloads like iTunes, a personalized radio service like Pandora, music upload to cloud like iTunes Match and Cloud Player. The company intends to install Music Hub on all Galaxy devices and then to grow the service to rank among the world's top four music services.
"One of the great advantages we have over our rivals is that Music Hub is pre-installed in our flagship product and will be available later in a bunch of other Samsung devices," said Mr. Kang.
Samsung plans to further expand its software and services offerings going forward. Still, Samsung does not exactly want to make money on software.
"We are preparing new services for launch early next year. With these offerings, people will start to think Samsung is good in software. [...] We have an internal target to break even in software. But, in general, selling content won't make much of a contribution to the bottom line. We see other new business opportunities associated with content," said Mr. Kang.