Samsung boss says it must ditch hardware focus in 2014

Samsung's chairman reckons the company needs to focus more on software in the coming year, and to innovate more.

Joe Svetlik Reporter
Joe has been writing about consumer tech for nearly seven years now, but his liking for all things shiny goes back to the Gameboy he received aged eight (and that he still plays on at family gatherings, much to the annoyance of his parents). His pride and joy is an Infocus projector, whose 80-inch picture elevates movie nights to a whole new level.
Joe Svetlik
2 min read

Most of us may have already jacked in our new year's resolutions, but Samsung has only just made one. So what's it going to do? Lose some weight? Get more exercise? Well possibly, but it could also do with focussing less on hardware, according to its boss.

In his annual speech to employees, chairman Lee Kun-hee said the company needed to "get rid of business models and strategies from five, ten years ago and hardware-focussed ways," The Wall Street Journal reports, quoting a statement sent to it by Samsung. Samsung's hardware has been doing pretty well of late, with its flagship devices selling upwards of 40 million units, but in my opinion, its software could do with a polish.

So what else does Kun-hee think Samsung should do? Well it's bad news for the r&d department. In order to innovate more, "Research and development centre(s) should work around the clock, non-stop," he said. Unlucky guys.

Samsung's Android devices use the company's own TouchWiz skin on top of Google's mobile operating system. Flagship devices like the Galaxy S4 come with any number of exclusive apps and features, but I'd question how much anyone uses them. TouchWiz is all well and dandy too, but it's not as slick an experience as stock Android. Those icons look pretty amateurish as well, especially shown on a glorious hi-res screen where there's nowhere to hide.

Fed up of filling Google's coffers, the South Korean giant is also working on Tizen, its own Linux-based mobile OS. We should start seeing Tizen-powered Samsung blowers later this year.

The Android-powered Galaxy S5 is thought to make its debut around February time, and rumours say it could boast 4GB of RAM and a 4K screen, as well as eyeball-scanning tech.

Should Samsung focus more on its software? Can Tizen take on Android? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook page.