Samsung's social network "Uhssup" may be officially announced alongside the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus later this week, Korean outlet HeraldCorp reported Monday, citing industry sources familiar with the matter. The platform will be available in the form of an Android app likely to be pre-installed on the company's next pair of flagships but its official name remains unclear, with the Seoul-based tech giant recently registering trademarks on the terms "Uhssup" and "Samsung Social" in its home country. The latter name would do a better job at telegraphing the main purpose of the app and would be in line with the company's recently employed product naming practices that led to the launch of services such as Samsung Internet, Samsung Email, Samsung Music, and Samsung Health.
The original trademark filed late last month described a location-based social network and the sources cited by HeraldCorp reiterated that focus, claiming that the platform will allow users to share their locations with their friends and comment on other people's check-ins. Outside of that feature, Samsung Social or however the solution ends up being called will also support instant messaging, insiders claim. As such, the app may be Samsung's attempt to compete with the likes of Facebook's Messenger, WhatsApp, and Viber, serving as the company's first major foray into messaging, one of the few remaining mobile service segments Samsung has yet to enter.
A new standalone messaging service with basic social networking features would mark the latest step in Samsung's efforts to not just strengthen its position of the world's largest smartphone vendor but do so in a manner that establishes a unique mobile ecosystem that's separated from that of other Android offerings despite being based on Google's omnipresent operating system. The firm has so far launched its answers to everything from Gmail and Chrome to Keep and the Google Assistant, being adamant to continue competing with the Alphabet-owned company's app offerings despite using its OS. The Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus are scheduled to be officially unveiled on Sunday and are expected to be released globally in mid-March, starting at around $800, depending on the market.