While Samsung appears to have its hands full with smartphones and other device launches right now, a new report suggests that the company may also develop and produce COVID-19 vaccines in the future.
The report mentions that Samsung Biologics, a biotechnology company under the Samsung Group will take the lead in the company’s vaccine R&D program.
This comes after the U.S. and South Korea reached an agreement for joint vaccine development in May 2021. The formal signing of this agreement will take place later this week with the South Korean President in attendance. During this trip, the South Korean President will also deliver a keynote address at the UN General Assembly.
SK Bioscience will also play a key role in South Korea’s vaccine development push
On a wider scale, this partnership will complement South Korea’s $1.92 billion investment over the next five years to position itself as Asia’s top vaccine producer. Korean tech giant SK Bioscience will also be a part of this new vaccine development program.
The Korean government has set a target to bring out its first locally developed COVID-19 vaccine by the first half of 2022. Moreover, South Korea also wants to become one of the top five vaccine producers in the world by 2025.
This won’t be the first time Samsung has stepped into the health sector. Recently, the company unveiled a new feature for Samsung Pay known as SMART Health Cards. However, this feature was limited to Galaxy phones given that it leverages the company’s dedicated payments app.
Samsung worked on this feature with Commons Project Foundation while the rollout started a couple of weeks ago. What made the process somewhat complicated was the fact that this required users to download the CommonHealth app beforehand. So while Samsung Pay stores your vaccination info, the Commonhealth app generates it.
Despite the company’s efforts, many were unhappy with the CommonHealth app. Play Store reviews of the app paint a grim picture. Some users reportedly couldn’t see their vaccination data on the Samsung Pay app even after following all the steps.