The Wall Street Journal last week documented Samsung’s difficulties in expanding beyond merely a hardware vendor into a provider of mobile devices and services for the enterprise. Knox, the company’s mobile security solution, has been “beset by delays and programming bugs,” the Journal reported, frustrating potential customers — including the U.S. Depart of Defense, which earlier this year approved the Knox-running Galaxy S4.
I think Knox is a brilliant strategy: Theoretically, at least, it enables Samsung to reach the massive enterprise market with highly secure Android gadgets, leveraging the BYOD trend. The move could help the company capitalize on the fading presence of BlackBerry, which once documented that market, and take back some of the market from Apple’s iOS, which is widely regarded as a more secure — if less flexible — operating system. Meanwhile, Windows Phone continues to slowly gain traction in the consumer market and — if ABI Research is right — could grow its share of the mobile enterprise market by six percent over the next five years. If Samsung continues to execute poorly, it’s likely to lose out on an enormously lucrative market.