Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google’s new parent company, Alphabet Inc., will visit Korea in three days to step up cooperation with Korean firms, including Samsung Electronics.
This will be the first visit of Schmidt after Google became a subsidiary of Alphabet in Aug. Therefore, there is much discussion about what kinds of cooperation businesses he will discuss with domestic companies, including Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics.
According to Google Korea on Oct. 25, Schmidt will come to Korea for a three-day visit from Oct. 29. He plans to meet Samsung Electronics’ management and its Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong at the Samsung headquarters in Seocho during the period.
Samsung Electronics and Google are leading the world’s mobile device market with Android smartphones. Market research firm IDC said that the Android operating system (OS) dominated the global market with an 82.8 percent share in the second quarter. Also, another market research company, SA, said that Samsung smartphones still retain the top spot with a 21.3 percent global market share in the second quarter this year, followed by Apple with 14.1 percent. For Samsung, Android OS and Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones are groups sharing a common destiny.
Also, Samsung Electronics and Google established a long-term cooperative partnership early last year, with a global patent cross-license agreement covering existing patents and those filed during the next 10 years. Since the agreement allows Samsung Electronics to freely use patents related to Google’s Android, the company is developing products using Google services and software with no restrictions. In the smart home market, moreover, the alliance between the two companies are forming the confrontation front against Apple. Samsung Electronics has a lot of cooperative areas with Google, such as home electronic appliances, memory semiconductors, displays and smartphones. In addition, a considerable synergy effect is expected when Google, which dominates the content market with platforms, and Samsung, which is the leader in the hardware market, join hands in the wearables sector.
Schmidt is also planning to meet LG Electronics’ management during the visit. Recently, LG Electronics and Google have been strengthening cooperation in various areas such as the Internet of Things (IoT) OS, unmanned vehicles, and Nexus phones. LG Electronics is adopting Google’s IoT OS, and has released Google’s third Nexus smartphone called the “Nexus 5X” in Korea on Oct. 20. The company will also adopt Android Pay, the simple payment system of Google, in next-generation smartphones. Also, LG Electronics is a member company of the Open Automotive Alliance (OAA) led by Google. Moreover, some Google engineers are stationed at LG Electronics Seocho R&D Campus to work on various projects with LG. An official from LG Electronics said, “Diverse projects between organizations under the chief technology officer and Google are being developed in our Seocho R&D Campus.”