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Samsung opens an independent innovation lab

gadgets Updated: Feb 11, 2015 12:39 IST

Move over Google X Labs, Samsung is also setting out to explore the possibilities of virtual reality, robot servants and drones.

The new research and development lab will be staffed by an autonomous and independent team whose only focus will be on exploring how technology can help people in their daily lives and therefore shape a better future.

According to the Korea Times, prime technologies under examination at the lab, which will be led by Samsung's mobile chief, Shin Jong-Kyun, include 3D printing, robots, drones and unmanned vehicles.

Of the new initiative, an unnamed Samsung official is quoted by the Korea Times as saying: "Given the significance of the team, members will have more authority and independence because the main purpose of the team isn't to develop single devices for any imminent results, but to develop solutions to go with Samsung's manufacturing capabilities."

It is an approach that has paid dividends for a number of the company's US competitors, particularly Google. It's own semi-secretive X Labs have already spawned smart contact lenses, a prototype autonomous car, a project for using drones to automatically deliver emergency supplies and medication and, of course most famously, Google Glass.

And although Samsung is seen as a fast follower rather than an innovator in areas such as the smartphone market -- thanks mostly to the patent and copyright infringement war it waged with Apple over the course of 2012 and 2013 -- in reality the company is a huge conglomerate at the cutting edge of a host of different technologies.

The lab will help the company bring all of those strands together in the hopes of creating new products, systems and solutions.