It's common knowledge at this point that Samsung has a track record of innovation. Some of their innovations, such as their humanfit clothing line, tend to really push the envelope. As of the Galaxy S6 and Note 5 lines, quality can arguably be added to that record. Samsung's software hasn't exactly been dormant, either. Their track record of horrible update turn times has begun to turn around and their formerly lambasted TouchWiz custom interface has been slowly improving. These improvements and innovations don't just happen, though; the research and development process is hairy business and takes some dedicated workers, as well as tons of resources and, at times, collaboration with other companies. Samsung, of course, innovates both in and out of the mobile space. They design and manufacture all sorts of things from televisions to barges.
All of this can cost a lot of money. In Samsung's case, the cost for research and development in 2015 was $13.4 billion, putting them in the number two spot for R&D spending for the year, according to Strategy &. Their total revenue for the year certainly justified the huge R&D budget, though; they pulled in a pretty stunning $209 billion for the year. This figure, while impressive, still indicates a fairly tough 2015 for Samsung growth-wise, and 2016 is poised to look much the same. In the midst of a slow recovery, Samsung is still firing on all cylinders for research and development, though the report did not say how much of that spending was in the mobile space.
Samsung's track record indicates they will likely not be slowing down any time soon. In the mobile space, at least, their flagship Galaxy S7 is getting closer and closer to launch time and they are continuously shaking up the patent and design scene. Although it is far too early to predict for certain when Samsung will be able to pull out of their slump and begin posting profit growth again, they're not exactly doing badly. That said, there have been no announcements thus far on a preliminary budget or any predictions for 2016's R&D spending, so we'll just have to wait and see what Samsung may have planned. With the rash of patents they've been putting out, 2016 is looking to be an exciting year for Samsung.