The Mobile Enterprise Experience Is Changing And Samsung Is Pioneering

By Patrick Moorhead - March 29, 2023
SAMSUNG

The rapid digital transformation of businesses over the past several years began to reveal the potential of mobility in the enterprise . . . and then came the pandemic. Once Covid-19 hit, we saw a period in which schools, businesses and consumers alike transitioned into remote environments. Following this rapid shift to remote work, businesses have either returned to the office, embraced some of the benefits of remote work via hybrid work models or even shifted all the way to a fully remote workforce.

From 2019 to 2022, Samsung's B2B mobile market has grown by about 65% globally, driven by expansion in North America, Europe and high-growth emerging markets. I was given the opportunity to talk about this growth and strategy with KC Choi, corporate executive vice president and head of the group and global mobile B2B team at Samsung Electronics. We discussed how Samsung is leveraging DaaS models for use cases such as micro-financing platforms in Africa, South America and India.

In this piece, I want to lay the framework for why mobile devices are increasingly more effective for the enterprise, especially for emerging use cases and markets. I then want to talk about how Samsung is well-positioned to take on these emerging use cases thanks to its mobile ecosystem and Knox platform.

Mobility in business

There is a tremendous opportunity for the enterprise and emerging markets to expand their digital transformation efforts by implementing more robust mobile environments. Technologies like video calling have enabled workers to complete tasks outside of the office, giving them more room in their days for higher productivity and potential ROI. Mobile devices are also becoming more powerful, versatile and modular, capable of completing the same tasks as a PC in the office but in a remote environment. However, many mobile devices do still lack some of the necessities of the enterprise.

Enterprise mobile environments must overcome challenges around security, user experience and system integration. These challenges leave enterprises to manage different types of endpoints: PCs and mobile devices.

Desktop PCs do not go anywhere, and they stay on a single corporate network. On the other hand, mobile devices like smartphones, tablets, and laptops work across many networks outside the company’s control, making them more vulnerable to attacks. Not only are mobile devices like smartphones, tablets and ACPCs connected to the internet by default, but the networks they do connect to often have minimal security.

Two of the most common examples are home internet and the coffee shop. Home internet is shared with multiple people who have, on average, two devices per person, and all it takes is one compromised device to threaten the usually weak security of the home network. Similarly, many coffee shops do not have any network security, plus you are connected to that same network alongside many people you do not know.

Mobile devices also have different operating systems, APIs and system integrations from PCs, making integration with corporate environments less seamless. Another difference is that employees are also consumers who post to Facebook, check the weather, listen to podcasts and do other personal tasks on their mobile devices. The consumer and employee roles need not be at odds with one another. From the software to the hardware, mobile devices should offer these consumer experiences while having the specific capabilities, features, management and support that are required for the enterprise. It is about creating a complete solution ecosystem.

In this context, I believe Samsung is positioning itself to offer a complete solution for its enterprise customers and emerging markets. It is strategically partnering with system integrators to create purpose-built environments that leverage the scale, consumer experience and support capabilities that it offers with its mobile brand.

Samsung is pioneering mobility for business

Samsung has been a pioneer in the mobile enterprise space for a long time. Yet I would not have considered Android a secure operating system for the enterprise until Samsung introduced Samsung Knox in 2013 Knox transformed Android into a viable business operating system from a security standpoint.

Today, Knox has grown from a security platform into an expansive management and analytics platform. This has been instrumental in furthering the company's presence in the B2B sector, opening up new opportunities for mobile business, especially in emerging markets.

I see a tremendous opportunity for the enterprise to leverage mobile environments through device-as-a-service (DaaS) models. As-a-service (aaS) hyperscale architectures in the data center are radically different from the racks and stacks we would normally see. But aaS architectures enable mobile businesses to leverage the modularity and security of the data center on a mobile platform. To achieve this, Samsung will need to partner with system integrators and cloud service providers. I believe this is within Samsung's grasp, especially considering its portfolio of affordable mobile devices.

Choi talked with me about how Samsung is thinking globally and acting locally. The company is strategically reducing the number of product customization points and variations it makes available so that there is a global customer experience, while also leveraging support and deployment at the local level so that customers can easily scale.

Partnerships will be vital to the success of Samsung's B2B DaaS ecosystem. As you’ll see in the video linked below, I talked at MWC with Choi and John Granger, Senior Vice President of IBM Consulting about how Samsung is partnering with IBM for application experiences and vertical applications. Other partners like DocuSign, Microsoft and Zoho also come to mind when we look at how Samsung's feature-rich smartphone ecosystem caters to business applications.

https://youtu.be/jZs-6PJv0t4

Samsung is thinking about business applications when it is loading its smartphone portfolio with features like the S Pen, 10X optical Zoom capabilities, Samsung Dex and large modular foldable displays. While these features are valuable for the consumer, businesses benefit from these rich features that maximize business workflows. Samsung has seen foldable adoption for the enterprise double year over year. Here you can read how Samsung’s mobile desktop experience, Dex, is beneficial in the Samsung Galaxy XCover6 Pro. You can also read here my coverage of Samsung’s recently announced Galaxy S23 flagship series and its new Galaxy Book laptops.

In many cases, Samsung is able to take these features and implement them in its affordable lineup of devices like its Galaxy A series and its durable Active lineup for frontline workers. With the added benefit of Samsung Knox across Samsung's mobile offerings, the company is able to cross the chasm for digital affordability.

Wrapping up

I believe few players in the mobile business space can offer an effective mobile experiences in an enterprise setting, especially considering how the digital world is rapidly changing and adapting to new and growing technologies.

I believe that Samsung is strategically enabling new mobile experiences for its enterprise customers and in emerging markets thanks to the Samsung Knox platform, its well-positioned mobile device portfolio and its digital ecosystem. Samsung really is thinking globally and acting locally. I believe partnerships will play a crucial role in its success in implementing DaaS models in emerging markets and the growing mobile enterprise space.

Patrick Moorhead

Patrick founded the firm based on his real-world world technology experiences with the understanding of what he wasn’t getting from analysts and consultants. Ten years later, Patrick is ranked #1 among technology industry analysts in terms of “power” (ARInsights)  in “press citations” (Apollo Research). Moorhead is a contributor at Forbes and frequently appears on CNBC. He is a broad-based analyst covering a wide variety of topics including the cloud, enterprise SaaS, collaboration, client computing, and semiconductors. He has 30 years of experience including 15 years of executive experience at high tech companies (NCR, AT&T, Compaq, now HP, and AMD) leading strategy, product management, product marketing, and corporate marketing, including three industry board appointments.