The Cloud

Samsung Takes to the Cloud with Joyent Deal

Joyent's cloud platform could power virtual reality and artificial intelligence applications on Samsung's smartphones and mobile devices.
Katie Kuehner-HebertJune 16, 2016

Samsung on Thursday said it would buy Joyent, a Sausalito, Calif.-based cloud services provider, to support the Seoul, Korea electronics firm’s growing lineup of mobile, internet of things, and cloud-based software and services.

As part of the deal, Joyent’s chief executive, Scott Hammond; its chief technology officer, Bryan Cantrill; and its vice president of product, Bill Fine, would join Samsung to work on company-wide cloud initiatives, though the Joyent unit would keep its name and operate as a stand-alone company.

“In Joyent, we saw an experienced management team with deep domain expertise and a robust cloud technology validated by some of the largest Fortune 500 customers,” Injong Rhee, chief technology officer of Samsung’s mobile communications business, said in a press release.

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Samsung did not disclose the price it would pay to buy Joyent.

In a later interview with The Wall Street Journal, Rhee said that Samsung was acquiring Joyent as a growing user of cloud computing services itself, and would effectively become Joyent’s largest client. The deal also gives Samsung a direct stake in the field of cloud services.

Samsung is hoping to use such services to power technologies like virtual reality and artificial intelligence in its smartphones and other mobile devices, Rhee told the WSJ. Cloud services could also collect and analyze data generated by Samsung’s devices, which could be used to make personalized recommendations for users and make Samsung’s products even more attractive.

“Big data is going to be a huge initiative for Samsung,” Rhee said.