Struggling Samsung wants to build its own Apple-style ecosystem

It must be one of those weekdays that ends with "day" because Samsung's copying Apple again.

It must be one of those weekdays that ends with “day” because Samsung’s copying Apple again.

Unlike Apple, which is more comfortable (and lucrative) than ever with its business strategy, here in 2015 Samsung is having a bit of an identity crisis. Is it a freedom-fighting Internet of Things company making smart refrigerators and connected TVs? Is it a Xiaomi competitor, turning out cheaper smartphones than ever for the developing Indian market?

Like a deer in headlights, the company seems to be skittishly veering from one idea to the next, without any real understanding of what it needs to do to once again be competitive.

Of course, there is one idea that has worked for Samsung in the past, and with its mobile division falling on hard times, that strategy seems to be one the South Korean tech giant is more than happy to return to: copying Apple.

Samsung is reportedly planning to follow Apple into the use of authentication chips for third party devices. Like Apple’s MFi program which uses Apple-licensed tech to connect accessories with the iPhone, iPad, or iPod, Samsung is apparently looking to introduce authentication chips for its Galaxy S6 to start building an accessory ecosystem similar to that of Apple.

It’s pretty obvious why. Apple’s ecosystem has not only proved to be a great money-spinner, but also helps Apple lock users into its ecosystem, while maintaining quality control by stopping third parties making unauthorized iOS accessories.

Samsung’s Galaxy S6 will apparently rip-off the design of the iPhone 6, so why not go the next step and basically pinch Apple’s whole approach to third-party accessories, too? If this rumor is correct, it will mark the first time Samsung has produced its own authentication chips for use by third parties.

While there’s far from a cast-iron guarantee that Samsung will succeed at building an Apple-style ecosystem (something Apple has been working on for years, by the way, and wasn’t prompted to do by a sudden panic about the dominance of a rival company), Samsung at least hopes that the revenue gained from selling its authentication chips will help offset the falling profits of its collapsing mobile business.

Yeah, good luck with that!