Samsung Proves Dedication to Stylus Through Investment

Samsung has proven its dedication to the stylus pen through a sizable investment in Wacom, a company that accounts for 85 percent of the worldwide pen tablet market.

The South Korean technology giant is investing $58.9 million in Wacom, which builds styluses as well as drawing and design tablets. The investment gives Samsung a 5 percent stake in the firm.

Wacom's technology has been used in many Samsung devices, including the Galaxy Note, Galaxy Note 2 and Galaxy Note 10.1. The firm said the sale of shares will be invested in "product development and manufacturing and supply system enhancements for products to be supplied to Samsung Electronics." It also aims to "expand its relationship" with Samsung further.

"It is becoming increasingly important to form close relationships with manufacturers of mobile information terminals, particularly smartphones and tablets, and to bring new products to market in a timely manner," said Wacom.

"With regard to digital pens for smartphones in particular, Wacom’s sales to Samsung Electronics have increased in recent years. Wacom digital pens are used in Samsung Electronics’ Galaxy Note smart phone, which is sold in 99 countries around the globe including North America, Europe, Japan, China and India. Wacom expects the inclusion of its digital pens in Samsung Electronics’ smartphones and tablets to lead to the expansion of the user base of its products."

Samsung, which has sold over 5 million Galaxy Note 2 phablets and over 100 million total Galaxy S smartphone units, is expected to offer a stylus with the Galaxy S4. It's also creating a Galaxy Note 8.0 tablet, a pair of Galaxy Tab 3 slates and the eight-core, 6.3-inch Galaxy Note 3.

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  • tarzan2001
    I look forward to seeing styluses available for more devices from Samsung than just the Galaxy Note phone and tablets. I've tested out the stylus on a Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet and found it to be quite good! It would be nice to have to option of using a stylus on a phone that's powerful, but with a slightly smaller screen, e.g. ~5 inches, for those of us that want large screens, just not extremely large screens! ;)
  • fnh
    Wow. If $50 million gets you 5% control, that surely tells you what 85% market share is really all about.
  • ikyung
    fnhWow. If $50 million gets you 5% control, that surely tells you what 85% market share is really all about.

    Yeah. Wacom in the early 90s tried to take off with the whole Pen/Touch-screen computing, but the technology itself as a whole wasn't "matured". No one was really into mobile computing, nor were they really into touch-screens because everything was much more power-hungry and bigger in the early 90s.

    Wacom started taking off maybe like 5-6 years ago when tablets and mobile computing itself was seeing light from the mass market for the first time. But, even then, only artists, filmmakers, designers, photographers, etc were interested in a stylus. But, with the Note and Note 2, stylus IS currently being adopted by the mass market.

    This seems like a very good move from Samsung to get some share of the best stylus manufacturer and partner with them to market the stylus. Me, personally, love using the stylus even though I don't do any type of art on a tablet. But, being able to handwrite notes and just use the stylus instead of fingers in general just seems better for me. Of course, it is all personal preference.