Samsung makes a play for the ultimate mobile experience with the Galaxy S8

The Samsung Galaxy S8 has just been released, with the world’s technology press praising its design, hardware and software features. It’s a very important strategic launch for the company after the battery issues of the Note 7 which saw a large amount of global attention last year. The phone has a wide range of new ideas from the removal the physical home button to an inclusion of a virtual assistant and facial recognition technology to unlock the device.

We recently launched a report1 into consumer expectations for the future of the mobile experience. The sentiment that came out loud and clear, was that people expect mobile to be the focal point for almost all daily activities. 60% of 2,000 people surveyed thought mobile would control our homes and almost half thought it could act as the main form of ID. We’re already reliant on our smartphones, and the dependency is certain to continue in the years ahead.

This is especially true if device manufacturers and mobile network operators continue to launch new services that improve the everyday routine of their customers.

Payments is a fascinating industry right now, with contactless gaining global adoption, and mobile payments—after years in the doldrums—finally taking off thanks to Apple Pay bringing it to the mainstream.

Samsung hopes to continue building momentum in mobile payments with the new Galaxy S8. The smartphone is equipped with embedded secure elements (eSE) that are vital in securing payments & transport services, and relies on the secure connectivity Trusted Service Hub. These elements adhere to a variety of payment standards. In banking that includes EMVco and China’s MPTS, while they are also able to support mobile contactless transport & micropayment standards MIFARE and Japan’s FeliCa, as well as EMVCo & China’s MTPS compliant Samsung’s proprietary service Samsung Pay.

46% of survey respondents are looking to device manufacturers to be most responsible for delivering the mobile experience of the future. If OEM device vendors can build trust in payment solutions, they will own even more of the customer’s everyday. We know global consumers want their mobile to act as the payment solution of choice given nearly half surveyed expect to be able to pay for anything, anywhere, at any time by 2025.

Those involved in the mobile space need to migrate from a focus on a hardware arms race, to one that links customer experience to value. It is the definitive factor for the success of a product range.

Linking services like public transport ticketing to our smartphones, via the Trusted Service Hub technology are key steps in adding convenience and value to today’s consumer.

Services are improving all the time, but we must protect against an ever-growing variety of threats. Samsung is preparing for this in a big way, with their TEE-based security platform Knox (TEE = Trusted Execution Environment – basically it is a trusted area in the main smartphone’s processor). The fact that an OEM is working hard to deliver government-certified enterprise security services shows just how integral to our lives the smartphone has become. The latest trend is then to bring a root of trust to the TEE by connecting it with an embedded Secure Element; it allows to add some of the latest features, such as fingerprint recognition.

What do you think? Will the Samsung Galaxy S8 truly change the game? Or are more innovations needed? Let us know your thoughts by tweeting to us at @GemaltoMobile or leave comment below.

Footnote

  • Gemalto’s 2017 Connected Living 2025 – Mobile Customer Experience – a survey of 1,969 consumers in six countries carried out in Q4 2016.

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