Samsung to Take a Bite Out of Apple Enterprise Market

Last summer, Samsung Electronics agreed to customize a version of their popular Galaxy S II smartphone for a health care start-up company that needed a device that would transmit heart monitor information directly to doctors. Since then, it seems that Samsung has officially decided to “play” in the enterprise solutions market. In fact, a Samsung spokesperson noted that Samsung has “made the decision to be No. 1 in enterprise.”

It seems to be a fairly bold statement, seeing as Apple and RIMM have dominated the enterprise market in the recent years. In fact, Apple was said to have recently passed RIMM (Blackberry) as the leading provider of company-issued smartphones and could maintain that position through 2016. (BusinessWeek). The overwhelming majority of large companies are testing iPhones and iPads for employee use.

On the surface it would appear that the barrier to entry in this market is very difficult, if not almost futile. How could Samsung possibly think there’s an opportunity here?  The answer is customization. Apple has a history of cutting edge products, but ultimately doesn’t customize ANY of them. What you see is what you get, and for most, this is quality product that needs no customization. However, Samsung sees an open door. So many companies are now looking for enterprise solutions that will best fit their structure, and Samsung feels it can meet these demands better than Apple or RIMM. By being open to customization as well as working with third party vendors to target specific industry’s needs, Samsung plans to fight to become #1 in enterprise solutions. The company is taking a good hard look at competitors like HTC and even Google, and notice that neither seems to be interested in the enterprise space. The business strategy seems to be to attack a market segment that has not yet been saturated.

Of course, to play in this segment, Samsung must be prepared for the new challenges it will bring. For example, an advantage of Android is that it’s highly customizable. However, it can be a disadvantage for the same reason, making it difficult to standardize security and management software to sell across multiple corporations due to so many different versions of Android currently available. To address this challenge, Samsung has already invested in designing its own software for this purpose which will make all Samsung devices operate consistently.

Samsung will have other challenges to consider as well. For example, the company will need to be sure to market to corporations accordingly to re-brand itself as an enterprise solution provider. Also, it will need to continue to offer a sustainable competitive advantage over time. Finally, resources will need to be reallocated or added to support corporations’ customer service requirements as well as to meet their customization needs.

How do you think Samsung will perform in the enterprise market? What would you say your biggest concern would be if you were the CEO of Samsung?


Samsung and Apple Duel in Enterprise Tech

10 thoughts on “Samsung to Take a Bite Out of Apple Enterprise Market

  1. I think the biggest concern for Samsung is going to be Microsoft’s push to retake the enterprise market by providing a relevant mobile offering. They have the strongest position with their exchange server and enterprise software, and honestly have too much of their existing desktop to lose if they would not win the enterprise market. I see Microsoft spending inordinately large sums of money to come out on top in this segment, because the have the cash and the highest risk if they lose.

  2. I think Tim wrote an interesting post here. One thing I would add is that a significant reason why Apple even got as deep in the enterprise game as they did, was because RIMM acknowledged Apple as a true threat to their enterprise business, and decided to support Apple products with its enterprise server software management. Because RIMM started allowing Apple products to be compatible with their enterprise servers, companies did not need to replace their RIMM software and servers, which facilitated the adoption of Apple products in the mobile corporate space, but it also did not push RIMM products out. Now RIMM can compete side by side with Apple and companies still have the capabilities to support Blackberry devices. This was a strong strategic move by RIMM in making Apple products compatible with their servers, because now RIMM is essentially only competing with Apple instead of the whole field. This also makes it more difficult for companies like Samsung, Motorola and Nokia to develop roots in the corporate mobile space, because business who use mobile technology that have existing RIMM servers that also support Apple are saying “if we can offer Apple and Blackberry services under one platform, why should we open it up any further?” Remember that Apple struggled to get corporations to buy into their mobile devices, and it wasn’t until RIMM made Apple devices work seamlessly on enterprise servers that corporate use of Apple products took off.

  3. In addition to the barriers to entry and inconsistency of the operating system, Android has also higher security risks. Corporations have used RIM for their smartphone of choice for several reasons but security is top three. Apple solved many of the initial concerns which is why they have overtaken Blackberry has the #1 smartphone choice by customers. If I were CEO of Samsung, I would make sure that Android tightens up the security loop holes.

    Overall I do think Samsung will perform well in the enterprise market. Customers like options and solutions that fit their specific needs. If Samsung can deliver a solution that addresses their customer’s requests then they will perform well in the space. Samsung will also need to invest in their sales force to ensure their customers are receiving support post sale. It won’t be enough to sell it then walk away. Enterprise solutions evolve and adapt overtime so the support and sales from Samsung will be critical to long term customer relationships.

  4. This post is relevant because it is well known that Samsung is becoming a real threat to Apple in the smartphone market. Especially with the release of the new Galaxy S4 due sometime in April, Apple has their work cutout for them. Samsung is making a big push by improving their security, focusing on customization, and working on their operating system. Apple has been stable for years now and with each new iPhone that they release, they do not make many significant changes to their phones. I believe that they have reached their peak and that Samsung will begin to take over. I also believe that Samsung will do well in the enterprise market because as the above statistics show, employees prefer Android over Apple, which should be a clear indication of how Samsung’s future success. Now, I am wondering what Apple will do next because we all know for a fact that they will not give up without a fight.

  5. I agree with what Colleen said regarding Android having higher security risks compared to Apple. This is important because although Samsung may have a competitive advantage in the enterprise market with customization, this advantage may not be enough to become number 1 in enterprise. Samsung will perform well in the enterprise market, but will need to do more than customization to dominate it. My biggest concern if I were the CEO of Samsung would be the continuous threat of Apple. Although Samsung has been coming up with products in high demand, the Galaxy Note II and the Galaxy S4 for example, Apple products are still being purchased because of the security and reliability their products offer. Coming out with new products that can be customized is a move that will help Samsung, but they also need to focus on their products already out and improve on security and their operating systems. New products can be seen as short term goals in my opinion, but reliable products will result in long term loyalty to Samsung products over Apple.

  6. I’d like to say that I’m sure of what’s going to happen in regards to who comes out on top in the enterprise market between Samsung and Apple, but I think it would be impossible to make a statement like that at this point. About 5 years ago, RIM’s Blackberry products were the standard mobile enterprise devices. Why? Email. RIM had a secure email system that was untouched by its competitors. Seemingly overnight, RIM was overthrown by Apple because of a serious lack of innovation on RIM’s part.

    The problem that Android has is that there are so many, perhaps TOO many choices of devices for enterprises to choose from. It may seem that choice is what consumers want, but in fact, it is the opposite. Marketing, especially that of Apple, is a prime example of this. People and companies don’t want to spend so much time researching and deciding what the best product is for them. Consumers want to be told what to buy. The success of Samsung’s Galaxy S3 was largely due to an aggressive marketing strategy. Their ads were on nearly ever bus that I saw in the Loop. If Samsung wants to win this battle, they need to keep pairing superior products with aggressive advertising. Samsung is getting more market share in the general market, and soon enough, the enterprise market should follow.

  7. I think Samsung will perform better if they simply didn’t try to focus on “ be[ing] No. 1 in enterprise.” Apples domination in this market goes beyond just a cell phone. They have developed a sort of “apple family” that consumers have grown comfortable in purchasing. Products such as
    iPad, iPhone, iPod,apple tv, mac computers, etc all contribute to this “family”. Arguably this “apple family” began in 2005 with their trendy U2 commercial following the release of the iPod video. Samsung simply needs to continue to focus long term and develop their own sort of “Samsung family”.

  8. As with any piece of technology, the improvements made are exponential any time there is a new break through. This means that while other competitors are trying to “catch-up” to what Apple offers, Apple’s resources have been spent on the next piece of new technology, meaning whenever they are done releasing new generation iphones without many improvements, the next item will be huge in the market. From a competitor’s standpoint, I would worry more about the new piece of technology and not trying to catch up in the smart phone industry. I believe a smart move for competitors would be to start spending their resources on creating this new technology before Apple gets to it if they want to stand a chance at leading the industry.

  9. I think that Samsung has a chance in competing in the market, but it is quite slim. Apple and Microsoft can easily advance ahead in the market with their current technology. Samsung would need be concerned about how they can market their product their consumers. If they can convince their consumers to buy their product, they will have a competitive advantage. This will be a tough market for Samsung because their competitors already have good standing in the market.

  10. It is amazing that a small company Samsung started a business with healthcare provided and now is a number one company with coming out with different Smartphone’s. A company likes Apple long time back it was number one company because of their Iphones. But now comparing what Samsung has now, customers are now not liking Iphone because Samsung (Android) phone has so much we can do with and what they offer like: apps, Samsung offers more then what Iphone offers.

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