The first ever Samsung Developers Conference hosted some 1,300 developers and mobile gurus to witness the announcements of a number of new developer tools and SDKs. Three days of SDKs, APIs and even a guest appearance from Damon Wayans Jr, highlighted the first of what is likely to be many Samsung Developers Conferences. Samsung KNOX, the dual-persona enterprise solution, was a main focus throughout the event. Injong Rhee, senior vice president of Samsung’s mobile communications business, said that, “KNOX will transform enterprise management.”
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Below, we’ve rounded up the five key things you should know from the three-day conference.
Dear Developers, Samsung wants you
Samsung recently announced that developers will receive an even bigger cut of revenues from in-app purchases made on Samsung devices. Technically, this announcement came after the conference, but it’s significant nonetheless. Starting Nov. 1 and lasting until April 30, 2014, developers will benefit from receiving 80 percent of all revenue related to in-app purchases, a 10 percent spike. The message to developers is clear, create more Samsung specific applications.
S Pen and the new Mobile SDK
The S Pen is a productivity tool, one that Samsung sees as an asset in the enterprise. Samsung is looking for apps tailored specifically to the S Pen – see “WANTED! S Pen App Developers” The S Pen package has been rolled together into the newly announced Samsung Mobile SDK, which is bundled with nine other packages, such as gestures and media control. The Mobile SDK is creating a more fluid development process and allowing developers to import any of the 10 packages available into their application. Per the Samsung Tomorrow blog, Guarav Mundra, a developer from India said during an interview, “There’s a full potential for B2B. I’m interested in healthcare. I want to develop new designs for apps using the S Pen, specifically catered for doctors. The S Pen would help handwrite prescriptions.”
Applications for your TV
Americans spend on average, 2.8 hours each day watching television. That’s more than any other activity aside from working and sleeping. It’s time to do more. Enter Samsung Multiscreen SDK. The new SDK operates somewhat like Google’s Chromecast, which allows users to stream content from a mobile device to a TV, but the Multiscreen SDK allows for deep integration with Samsung Smart TV’s. Today, many flat-screens come fully equipped with advanced browsers and are powerful tools in their own right. Add in the ability to flick content running on your mobile device directly onto your TV opens up a realm of new and exciting possibilities. Pandora, the music streaming application, demonstrated the application’s ability to automatically detect a Samsung Smart TV when a user enters a room. The TV then translates what’s currently streaming on the Pandora mobile app and displays the application in all its LED 1080p glory. A user can control the application, in this case skip a song or turn it up, all from his phone – no remote needed. What’s unique is the fact that once a user is no longer near the TV, the content still remains.
Samsung is calling on mobile gamers and giving them new ways to interact and communicate. ChatON 2.0, the company’s improved gaming API that allows gamers to share scores and challenge their buddies to a friendly dual is neat, but the innovative opportunities with the ChatON API are abundant. Gamification is a powerful thing. ChatON leaderboards and achievements combined with collaboration bring an entirely new level of social gaming to the device. ChatON is another conscious step into building an ecosystem of connected devices and giving developers an easier framework to integrate. Samsung is allowing third-party content providers and third-party developers to integrate with the ChatON API, which points to a future of much social interaction within applications and across devices. ChatON 2.0 includes a translator, which could be truly valuable in the enterprise as well as a walkie-talkie for quick and easy communication.
ChatON LIVEpartner brings unique content to your device from third-party providers such as the History Channel or Esquire. ChatOn is currently available on iPhone/iPad, Blackberry, Windows mobile phones, Windows 8 PCs, Web and Samsung feature phones. But the SMART TV could be next, which means watching TV might become a whole lot more interactive – and tailored to your content preferences. Imagine chatting with friends all across the country during a live sporting event, or recommending your favorite show to a co-worker. Israel’s hit singing competition “Rising Star” shows off the beginning of what could be a much more social TV experience. As a singer performs, a large LED projects faces of voters profile pictures and tallies votes via an app as opposed to calling in. The show is dominating its time-slot with a 49 percent share of the prime-time market.
A new Samsung OS?
Then there’s Tizen. Samsung’s new, albeit under-the-radar operating system. The Samsung OS is Linux-based and has not been released to the public, but did make a brief but quiet appearance at the conference. Intel and Samsung are working to bring the open-source OS to life, but not without the help of third-party developers. In July of 2013, Samsung announced the Tizen App challenge and $4 million in cash prizes. The Tizen build kit, a tablet from Systena design specifically for developers was released this month in Japan. Samsung may be luring Android developers now, hoping to see more Samsung specific applications, but Tizen developers may be their next big target. In an August interview courtesy of CNET, Samsung Electronics co-CEO, J.K. Shin stated that the company sees the potential for a large ecosystem of Tizen devices. “There are many convergences not only among IT gadgets, including smartphones, tablets, PCs and cameras, but also among different industries like cars, bio or banks.”
To learn more about the Samsung Developers Conference, view all the highlights from the event on the Samsung Tomorrow blog.