Samsung Electronics has been selected to provide LTE-based mobile devices and relevant solutions to an emergency service network in the United Kingdom as part of the country's efforts to upgrade its communication services for public safety personnel such as the police and fire departments. The South Korean tech giant won the contract with UK's Home Office, which tapped Samsung Electronics to help the country switch to an LTE-based emergency network from the old airwave-based network system.
As part of the contract, Samsung Electronics will also supply LTE-related accessories on top of the smartphones for use in the Home Office's water resistance and emergency services that comprise voice solutions, recent reports indicate. Currently, the UK Home Office uses a network system that restricts its operations only to voice radio communication, preventing the service's customer-facing staff from performing other advanced functions including the transmission of broadband data. With the new contract, staff members will be able to carry out location identification and video live stream, among other functions, using LTE-based smartphones. It remains unclear, however, what particular family of devices Samsung will be supplying to the UK Home Office.
Reports about Samsung's new contract with the UK government come a few days after Counterpoint Research released a new report that revealed Samsung maintained a flat market share of 34 percent year over year during the third quarter of 2017, trailing behind Apple Inc. The Cupertino, California-based tech giant remains the top player in the smartphone market with a 34.4 percent market share, according to the research. Nonetheless, Samsung has been keeping its UK footprint growing over the last couple of years by launching a plethora of mid-range and high-end LTE-based smartphones in the country. For example, the Galaxy A3 (2017) and Galaxy A5 (2017) were released in the United Kingdom in February of this year for £279 and £369, respectively, via Vodafone and Carphone Warehouse. Then last April, Vodafone UK announced the availability of the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus. All of these devices, and a number of others, like the Galaxy Note 8 are currently available through various channels in the UK. Having said that, we're still looking to find out whether low-end or high-end phones will be supplied to the UK emergency network, stay tuned.