J.K. Shin, president of Samsung’s mobile business, sat down with The Wall Street Journal and revealed that the South Korean manufacturer has begun aggressively hiring foreign software engineers in an effort keep pace with Apple’s iPhone. Samsung, which has traditionally developed its own hardware, is also embracing the possibility of making key acquisitions in the mobile space. “The technology industry is growing very quickly and it is too much of a burden to try to do everything in-house,” Shin said. “There are many qualified workers from India that are very skilled in software. And there are small companies that we can acquire that have good research and development capabilities.”
Shin did not name any potential targets, however, and was quick to shoot down rumors regarding an acquisition of Canada’s Research in Motion. While Google’s purchase of Motorola Mobility has Samsung on edge, the company’s senior vice president of sales and marketing Younghee Lee, maintains that Samsung will continue to work with Android because it is currently the most popular platform.
Shin called the company’s latest flagship smartphone — the Galaxy S III — an example of Samsung’s renewed focus on software. While the phone is based on Google’s Android operating system, Shin highlighted how Samsung engineers were able to write new software and enable unique features such as the Galaxy S III’s face-detection and eye-tracking capabilities, which control various functions on the handset based on whether or not the user is looking at the display.