Samsung un­veils its next steps at de­vel­oper con­fer­ence

The National - News - - BUSINESS - ALKESH SHARMA San Jose

Samsung, the world’s big­gest smart­phone and mem­ory chip maker, pre­sented its lat­est tech­nolo­gies at a two-day de­vel­oper con­fer­ence in Cal­i­for­nia.

SDC19 sought to dis­play the full po­ten­tial for Samsung users through the adop­tion of in­no­va­tions such as fifth-gen­er­a­tion mo­bile net­works, the In­ter­net of Things and in­tel­li­gence. Here are six note­wor­thy an­nounce­ments from the event.

‘Flip’ smart­phone – the new kid on the block

It was Samsung’s fold­able phone that stole the lime­light at last year’s de­vel­oper con­fer­ence but this year it was a new “flip” phone. The com­pany teased a new fold­able con­cept – not yet named – that looks more like a tra­di­tional flip phone. It was shown fold­ing ver­ti­cally, con­firm­ing last month’s re­ports that Samsung’s next bend­able phone will fold to be­come a ‘compact’ square.

“This brand-new form fac­tor that we are now ex­plor­ing will not only eas­ily fit in your pocket, but it also changes the way you use your phone,” said Hye­soon Jeong, head of Samsung’s frame­work re­search and de­vel­op­ment. The idea is to make the phone “more compact”.

Samsung opens doors for third-party TV mak­ers

For the first time, the South Korean con­sumer tech gi­ant is al­low­ing third-party TV mak­ers to use its op­er­at­ing sys­tem, Tizen.

This will at­tract more man­u­fac­tur­ers, giv­ing stiff com­pe­ti­tion to An­droid TV OS, which has be­come the de facto choice for the ma­jor­ity of de­vel­op­ers.

Con­sumers will also have the op­tion to turn off ad­ver­tise­ment-track­ing fea­tures in Tizen that is glob­ally sup­ported by pop­u­lar stream­ing apps and ser­vices such as HBO and Net­flix.

Samsung TVs ac­counted for close to one third of the to­tal ship­ments world­wide in the sec­ond quar­ter of this year, ac­cord­ing to mar­ket re­searcher IHS Markit. It was fol­lowed by lo­cal ri­val LG (16.5 per cent) and Ja­pan’s Sony (8.8 per cent).

Bixby be­comes smarter

Samsung an­nounced en­hanced ca­pa­bil­i­ties for Bixby, its ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence plat­form, to help de­vel­op­ers and con­sumers fin­ish tasks more quickly and eas­ily.

Newly in­tro­duced Bixby tem­plates will al­low de­vel­op­ers to cre­ate so­lu­tions us­ing pre-ex­ist­ing forms – and they don’t need to start from scratch.

Be­sides this, en­hanced Bixby apps will let de­vel­op­ers build so­lu­tions that go be­yond smart­phones — to tele­vi­sions, tablets, smart watches and re­frig­er­a­tors.

Lat­est up­date for An­droid de­vices

Samsung an­nounced the new­est up­date to the soft­ware over­lay­ing An­droid de­vices. Named One UI 2, the new up­date was re­leased through a video with some de­pic­tion of ba­sic fea­tures. It will stream­line dif­fer­ent apps and en­sure smooth func­tion­ing of the de­vice.

Dark Mode is also en­hanced to of­fer im­proved view­ing in low­light en­vi­ron­ments and be less tir­ing to look at for screen-weary eyes. Dark Mode also has a tech­ni­cal as­pect: the darker hues burn up less bat­tery power.

End-to-end se­cu­rity

Us­ing emerg­ing tech­nolo­gies, such as IoT, AI and 5G, Samsung has an­nounced new tools and pro­grammes.

To give both de­vel­op­ers and users peace of mind, Samsung is of­fer­ing Knox SDK soft­ware, al­low­ing part­ners and app de­vel­op­ers to in­te­grate ad­vanced se­cu­rity so­lu­tions to their apps and ser­vices.

“Knox is built around hard­ware root of trust, not just im­ple­mented af­ter the de­vice is built … giv­ing it a foun­da­tion like no other se­cu­rity sys­tem in the mar­ket,” said Se­ungyun Lee, prin­ci­pal en­gi­neer, Knox plat­for­mat Samsung.

Join­ing forces with IBM

In part­ner­ship with Amer­i­can tech gi­ant IBM, Samsung an­nounced a new plat­form lever­ag­ing the lat­est cloud and AI ca­pa­bil­i­ties.

Built on the IBM cloud, the new plat­form will al­low clients to track a worker’s vi­tal sig­nals, in­clud­ing heart rate and phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity, to de­ter­mine if the per­son is in dis­tress. It then au­to­mat­i­cally dis­patches help.

This is de­signed to im­prove the work en­vi­ron­ments for po­lice of­fi­cers, fire fight­ers and other first re­spon­ders.

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