All of the pieces are falling in place for Samsung to take a running leap over Apple in the smartphone feature market. What I’m talking about here isn’t necessarily Samsung taking away market share from Apple – the Samsung Galaxy S7 almost certainly will not outsell the iPhone 7. What I’m talking about is daring, innovative moves that push the personal device industry forward. Apple remains a company that are wonderful and work well. They aren’t about creating something that has a significant chance of not selling as much or more than their previous-generation product.
Samsung, on the other hand, makes so many devices and enters so many markets so constantly, it appears as if they’re testing their products in public.
They want to be the first to use products that no-one has ever used before.
Product categories like virtual reality, for example. Samsung has teamed up with Oculus to create the GearVR and contribute manufacturing knowhow in the creation of the Oculus Rift.
The Oculus Rift will be released in the first quarter of 2016. The Samsung Galaxy S7 (if it follows release schedules from past years) will also be released in the first quarter of 2016.
Samsung already has their GearVR headset out, allowing all modern (read: this year’s) Galaxy S6-era smartphones to provide its wearer entrance into the virtual realm. The Galaxy S7 will almost certainly also be granted entrance with the same headset.
At the same time – and here’s where Samsung will kick the door in for mobile users – the company will likely release a virtual reality camera.
But imagine this: Samsung creates a virtual portal anywhere in the world by combining a spherical photo/video camera for Gear VR and the Galaxy S7.
You’ve got the computer – that’s the Galaxy S7, the camera for media input, and the GearVR for media output.
They’ve already got the ecosystem set in place with Milk VR and Oculus 360 Photos – not to mention big name apps for VR like Flickr.
This would be the consumer-level camera for virtual reality (spherical) image and video capture, released right alongside the Galaxy S7. For professionals – Samsung has them covered with what’s still called Samsung Project Beyond. Remember that? Briefly mentioned at Samsung’s developer event back in November of 2014.
When Samsung enters a device market, they go big or they go home. They’ll release more than one camera. One for professionals, the other for the everyday consumer. Both will use the Galaxy S7 as a viewfinder, and both will provide spherical media for the Galaxy S7 and eventually the Galaxy Note 6.
Meanwhile Apple is looking into augmented reality iPad patents and augmented reality companies like Metaio. Don’t expect too much augmentation of reality within the next 6 months, but after that? Who knows!