Samsung Bets Big on BYOx; Galaxy Note 8 Released

By Lori Castle, Editor in Chief — February 25, 2013

Samsung is making a big bet on BYOx with the announcement of Samsung KNOX — an end-to-end secure solution that provides security hardening from the hardware through to the application layer — as well as with the trialing of a new dual-device persona — built on type-1 hypervisors and embedded into the Samsung Galaxy S III.

 
In fact, Stephen Drake, Program Vice President for Mobility & Telecom research at IDC told Mobile Enterprise,“They [Samsung] are definitely throwing down the gauntlet.” His organization predicts that Android will represent more than 60% of all employee-liable smartphone shipments and one-third of corporate-liable smartphones worldwide. “Samsung wants to own the Android market and they want to be the enterprise choice,” Drake said.
 
He noted that it’s of interest that both a containerization and container solution were announced on the same day. “There are different approaches. Two separate OSes versus the containerization which is just the separation of the OS into two personas. Depending on how you think about it, you could argue that the virtualization approach is the most separated.”
 
So it seems that Samsung wants to be on both sides of that “argument” and agree with everyone in order to be everywhere.
 
As Apple quietly sneaks into the enterprise, but doesn’t directly address business, and BlackBerry tries to win it back in a fresh play for BYOD, Samsung’s new offerings show that it is serious about taking enterprise market share. Plus, on top of all this, the Galaxy Note 8 was officially confirmed, and is being positioned as the tablet of choice for work.

Galaxy Note 8
Rumored earlier in the year, the new 8-inch tablet, the Galaxy Note 8.0 is said to usher in “a new era of intelligent Note technology set to re-ignite the mid-size tablet category that Samsung established in 2010.”
 
In a media tour around Samsung’s tablet strategy, just prior to launch, Shoneel Kolhatkar, Director of Product Planning, Mobile, called the Galaxy Note 8 “a truly premium, portable tablet.” He said that the user loved the note 10.1 experience and the Note II experience, along with the premium suite upgrade, and “all of that is packaged in this sleek form factor in the mini tablet category.”
 
The device hits all the three strategic elements on which Samsung is focused according to Kolhatkar. This includes on the go, at home and at work. The enterprise case for the Note 8 is simply put. He said, “The intent is for people to be really efficient at work.” Nanda Ramachandran, VP and GM of Samsung Mobile said the Note moves the form factor from consumption to creation.
 
The Note 8.0 was literally inspired by a notebook – the paper kind that is – a place where Kolhatkar said people write their thoughts, inspirations and take meeting notes. “The Note 8 is meant to completely digitize your notebook; completely replace it,” he explained.
 
Specs
While Kolhatkar said that this device is not about the “specs game,” but rather that the experience is driving the specs, and Samsung is very focused on delivering the right UX. Still the specs are certainly worth noting.
 
One of the top innovations of the Galaxy Note 8 are multi-window options to split the screen and allow optimal access to a number of live applications. When it comes to new S Pen functionality, with “Air View,” you can hover over the screen to see previews of videos, emails, photos and appointments on SPlanner without opening the file or application in full. Also, for the first time, you can use S Pen to control the physical menu/back buttons on the device.
 
Here’s the Note 8.0 by the numbers:
  • 1.6GHz A9 quad-core processor
  • 8” WXGA (1280x800, 189 ppi) TFT display
  • Android 4.1.2 (Jellybean)
  • 5 megapixel rear camera; 1.3 front
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n (2.4 & 5 GHz), Wi-Fi Direct, AllShareCast, BT4.0, USB2.0
  • 2GB (RAM), 16/32GB, microSD (up to 64GB)
  • Codec: MPEG4, H.263, H.264, WMV, DivX, (1080p Full HD video @ 30fps)
KNOX Out
Samsung states that KNOX incorporates security enhanced (SE) Android developed by National Security Agency (NSA), and integrity management services implemented in both hardware and the Android framework.
 
At the application layer, KNOX offers a container solution that separates business and personal use of a mobile device. This separation is enforced by SE Android and file system level encryption, offering protection of business data and applications from data leakage, viruses and malware attacks.
 
Lightweight and compatible with existing common enterprise infrastructure such as MDM, VPN and directory services, (see solution partners below) KNOX provides reassurance and convenience for IT departments looking to implement and manage BYOD strategies.
 
Easily accessible via an icon on the home screen, the KNOX container presents to users a variety of enterprise applications in a secure environment including email, browser, contacts, calendars, file sharing, collaboration, CRM and business intelligence applications.
 
It enables existing Android eco-system applications to automatically gain enterprise integration and validated, robust security with zero change to the application source code. KNOX relieves application developers from the burden of developing individual enterprise features such as FIPS compliant VPN, on-device encryption, Enterprise Single Sign On (SSO), Active Directory support and Smart Card based multi-factor authentication.
 
“Security and privacy are understandably held up as barriers to businesses embracing BYOD demands. Meanwhile, users are seeing the latest smartphones and tablets and knocking at the door of IT demanding to be able to use their own devices,” said JK Shin, President and Head of IT and Mobile Division. “The solution is clear — combine the business and personal in a single device.”
 
Partner Power
To power some of the security features mentioned, and enable the container, Samsung has partnered with a wide range of solution providers, many who already have substantial enterprise penetration. For example:
 
Airwatch: AirWatch integrates with KNOX for enterprise-ready Android deployments. The solution already implements the Samsung SAFE features and will provide same-day KNOX support allowing enterprises and government institutions to: create container on the device; enforce container passcode; configure corporate email in the container; set VPN policies at the application level; allow ability to silently add, remove and update apps in the container; enable single sign-on; encrypt by default; and restrict all access to container applications and data to the container space.
 
Centrify: Through an OEM software license and marketing agreement, Centrify will enable multi-application SSO for mobile and web apps inside the Samsung KNOX container, allowing customers to use their existing infrastructure — Microsoft Active Directory (AD) — to manage KNOX containers, Samsung devices and role-based access to mobile applications centrally and easily. The Centrify and Samsung partnership also includes re-sale of Centrify premium mobile and SaaS Single Sign-on offerings via Samsung partners, as well as joint marketing to Samsung customers and partners.
 
Fixmo: Fixmo Sentinel Integrity Services will be embedded on Samsung Galaxy smartphones and tablets. This security offering detects tampering, policy violations, potential vulnerabilities and the presence of unverified or potentially malicious third-party applications on mobile devices. The core patented technology, originally termed “AutoBerry”, was developed by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) as a means of protecting smartphones and verifying system integrity and compliance for U.S. Department of Defense agencies. Under a Co-operative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the NSA, Fixmo transitioned the technology from a Government-Off-The-Shelf (GOTS) technology to a Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) offering.
 
MobileIron: The MobileIron/Samsung partnership will enable organizations to "confidently welcome" Samsung devices into even the most highly security-conscious environments. MobileIron and Samsung will deliver the KNOX containerized environment and end-to-end management of enterprise apps and documents.
 
Red Bend: Red Bend and Samsung partnered to conduct enterprise trials of a dual-persona version of the Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone beginning in March. Red Bend’s TRUE solution turns a single mobile device into two virtual phones running on the same hardware, keeping work life completely separate from personal life, and permits different entities to manage each virtual phone securely over the air. The type-1 mobile hypervisor runs directly on top of the hardware.
 
SOTI: SOTI’s MobiControl MDM product leverages Samsung’s KNOX to deliver a solution that allows organizations to leverage the benefits of mobility while making sure that their corporate data is safe and secure. MobiControl allows IT administrators to manage their data within Knox containers via an easy-to-use management console and a powerful set of management features such as anti-virus configuration, category based web filtering, email policies, document management, location based management and more.

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