New Galaxy S8 Leak Suggests Samsung Vs Microsoft Battle – Forbes
The Galaxy S8 continues to tease the geekerati with the promise of new technology and new thinking about how an Android smartphone should be used. The latest leak comes through the reliable Steve Litchfield who highlights a potential new operating mode for the 2017 flagship… the Samsung Desktop Experience.
You might raise an eyebrow on why a Windows Phone site is reporting this story, but that becomes clear when you realise what Samsung’s Desktop Experience is. By allowing the Galaxy S8 to connect to a monitor, keyboard and mouse, the Android-powered handset can create a new ‘Extended Workspace’ that in effect creates a desktop environment driven by the handset.
That’s a direct play into the same space as Microsoft’s Continuum which allows a Windows 10 Mobile handset to drive a monitor, keyboard, and mouse. This replicates the Windows 10 desktop using the portable device. The pitch being that if you have a Windows 10 device you don’t need to cart a laptop as well, just a keyboard and mouse and an HDMI cable to attach a screen (such as the one in most hotel rooms).
Windows 10 Mobile does not have a huge number of advantages in the current market. Microsoft is hoping to address the app gap with a resurgence in Universal Windows Apps later in the year and a potential move to ARM chips to allow full-blown Windows 10 to run on mobile devices, but these are all for much later in 2017. The advantage now is in strong enterprise support, cloud-based apps, and the enterprise use-case leveraging Continuum.
And Samsung is ready to target the latter.
There are a lot of questions that Samsung need to answer – with just one slide from an internal presentation we’re deep into Taniyama-Shimura territory here – but Samsung already has experience with large-screened Android devices in its Galaxy Tab Pro and Note Pro tablets. Bringing TouchWiz to a larger screen is something the South Korean company already has experience with.
Samsung also likes to keep its flagship handsets at the forefront of any new technology. While running desktop-style software from a smartphone is not strictly speaking new (there are countless examples in the smartphone history books) it is a principle that is experiencing a resurgence. Samsung will want to be seen leading that charge.
Assuming it does appear on the Galaxy S8, it would also promote the new flagship as an enterprise device. With the Galaxy Note 7 no longer in the portfolio the South Korean company needs to maintain its presence as a supplier of competent business device. The Desktop Experience would certainly help that, as well as weaken one of Samsung’s mobile competitors who could (over time) threaten the dominance of the Galaxy brand.