Whether or not you subscribe to the school of thought suggesting Samsung’s (005930) meteoric rise has been fueled in large part by unabashed copying of Apple (AAPL) products, there is certainly evidence to support the idea that Apple’s iPhone and iPad have inspired Samsung’s most popular devices. Count TheStreet’s Ernie Varitimos among those who believe Samsung’s success is due in large part to mobile devices that are “direct knock-offs” of Apple products, but he thinks Apple is now getting ready to make a move that Samsung will find impossible to copy.
Though no announcements have been made at this point, Apple is currently working on a smartwatch. Details have been reported by news organizations including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg, and recent claims suggest the “iWatch” will launch later this year. Samsung is also working on a smartwatch — the company recently confirmed the news — but according to TheStreet, the upcoming Samsung smartwatch will be unable to match Apple’s iWatch despite the company’s best efforts.
“Perhaps the most crucial element of wearable computers, in fact all mobile devices, is the cloud,” Varitimos wrote in a recent article. “People are overlooking the incredible infrastructure that will be necessary to support true mobility. Apple has established a presence in the cloud, and it has the resources to dominate it, to an extent that Samsung can only watch. Samsung will remain a follower, and may even be forced to eat Apple’s breadcrumbs.”
Apple’s iCloud has come under fire recently due to issues many users continue to have with its performance, but Varitimos is right that Apple has a huge lead on Samsung when it comes to in-house cloud-based services. Whether or not these services will play a major role in the emerging wearable device market remains to be seen.