The company might well be the world's most popular Android handset maker, but when it comes to offering its consumers apps they value, Samsung still has some way to go.
Samsung's flagship phones come pre-installed with a host of in-house developed apps offering everything from social messaging to voice-activated search. And while ChatOn, the company's competitor to WhatsApp currently boasts 100 million active users, according to US research firm, Strategy Analytics, those users are accessing it on average for 0.1 minutes a month -- that's six seconds.
The company studied how more than 250 US Galaxy SIII and Galaxy SIV owners used their handsets over a single month and found that Samsung's entire app suite, including its dedicated apps store (Samsung Apps) account for seven minutes of app interaction, whereas Facebook alone accounted for 664.1 minutes (11 hours).
The study, published in the Wall Street Journal, highlights that Samsung has some way to go before it can challenge established Android app titles but that the company is taking the next logical step as the smartphone becomes ubiquitous, to win and keep users via apps unavailable elsewhere or aimed specifically at the consumer.
Unfortunately, like its approach to the handsets themselves, Samsung appears to be overdoing it. Just like the fact that the company usually launches several different versions of each of its flagship devices, they also come preinstalled with more apps than most competing phones. Strategy Analytics says that in the case of the Galaxy SIV alone, the number is 21 apps more than the average.
However, things might be starting to change. The company is experimenting with loading apps onto new handsets based on the owner's interests and is looking to partnerships to create apps and features that users might love rather than tolerate, such as Milk Music, its take on music streaming and internet radio apps.
Despite only being compatible with select handsets and only being offered in the US at present, it has been downloaded and installed 380,000 times.