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Electronics

Inside Samsung: Top level meetings drive ecosystem buildup

The heads of mobile, display and home appliances gather biweekly to take on Apple’s ecosystem

By Aug 02, 2021 (Gmt+09:00)

Samsung’s multi-device experience (MDE) concept image
Samsung’s multi-device experience (MDE) concept image

Samsung Electronics Co.’s latest strategic focus is setting up its own ecosystem of devices ranging from mobile phones, home appliances to TVs.

Samsung, with aims to challenge the Apple ecosystem that has lured more than 620 million users worldwide with its iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade and more, is strategizing ways to deliver more connected experiences for the users of its products and devices.

A Samsung official recently told The Korea Economic Daily that the company is holding regular meetings with three senior executives who are leading different business functions. The official added that the meetings kicked off at the end of 2020 and are typically held on a biweekly basis with key division heads Han Jong-hee, Lee Jae-seung and Roh Tae-moon in attendance.

Han Jong-hee, president and head of Samsung visual display business
Han Jong-hee, president and head of Samsung visual display business

Han heads up Samsung’s display unit as the president of the company's visual display business, while Lee leads its consumer electronics unit as the president of the digital appliances division. Roh is the president and head of Samsung’s mobile communications business.

 Lee Jae-seung, president and head of the digital appliances division, with Samsung Bespoke home appliances 
 Lee Jae-seung, president and head of the digital appliances division, with Samsung Bespoke home appliances 

The source said that the primary agenda of the executive meetings is to brainstorm ways to bolster the multi-device experience (MDE) within the ecosystem of Samsung devices. A stronger and deeper MDE allows users to spend more time within the brand’s ecosystem and drives users to purchase new products and devices of the same brand.

“All three heads not only share a macroscopic view that sees through industry changes but also closely monitor the details of the company’s products and services,” said the Samsung official.

Roh Tae-moon, also known as TM Roh, president and head of Samsung's mobile communications division, at CES 2021 in January
Roh Tae-moon, also known as TM Roh, president and head of Samsung's mobile communications division, at CES 2021 in January

Apple is arguably the world’s top company in delivering MDE. Its efficient, user-friendly device connection system has enabled Apple fans worldwide to stay within its ecosystem by purchasing the products compatible with iPhones such as Apple Watches and iPads, and also by subscribing to its various software services.

“Samsung too has been emphasizing the importance of MDE in recent years. The executive meetings not only discuss ways to deliver more seamless connectivity among devices, but also try to establish Samsung’s own service platforms in the online arena,” said another Samsung representative.

SmartThings is the IoT platform of Samsung Electronics for connecting various devices within the ecosystem.
SmartThings is the IoT platform of Samsung Electronics for connecting various devices within the ecosystem.

Industry experts say that Internet of Things (IoT) technology plays a central role in delivering a bolstered MDE to the users. The IoT enables the users to run robot vacuums and air purifiers even when they are away from home, for instance, or operate washing machines and dryers remotely while in bed. The experts added that because of such convenience and interconnectivity, the users of the IoT-powered devices and appliances are likely to purchase products and services under the same brand’s ecosystem.

Other Samsung sources said the biweekly meetings are also getting extra support from more senior members of the company, including President and Co-CEO Kim Hyun-suk and President and CFO Choi Yoon-ho. Kim and Choi are reported to be mentoring and reviewing the overall strategic direction of the meetings and also devising ways to financially support relevant action plans.

Write to Shin-young Park at nyusos@hankyung.com

Daniel Cho edited this article.

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