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Samsung's new dev tools bring multiscreen capabilities to TV and mobile

Nicole Lee, @nicole

Samsung has just announced several new and improved software development kits (SDK) at its first ever developers conference in San Francisco that could mean lots more features to your existing Samsung hardware. The biggest news is a new multiscreen SDK that would allow users to share content across various Samsung devices, be it smartphones or their television set, thanks to a new cloud-based publishing system. Especially exciting for gamers, Samsung has also partnered with Unity technologies to create a multiscreen gaming engine that allows for gaming on any TV -- as long as you use a Samsung phone or tablet of course. It also showed off the Gamepad attachment that was revealed at IFA this year. "We take the very best of what Unity is, and combine it with the best of what Samsung has to offer," said David Helgason, CEO of Unity, on stage.

Speaking of smartphones and tablets, Samsung has also released a fresh mobile SDK that would lead to a number of improvements to current handsets. There's a lot to dig through here, but a few notable ones include more precise S-Pen controls, new visual animations, seamless handwriting recognition, and a multi-window capability that lets you run multiple resizable apps simultaneously. An example of this was shown at the conference using the new Twitter app, where you can tweet and browse the web at the same time. What especially delighted us is something called Samsung Chord, which essentially promises peer to peer connections across devices. A stage demonstration showed how you could use Chord to "pinch" the screens of two side-by-side tablets to instantly connect them and start playing a joint game of air hockey.

Gallery: Samsung Developers Conference keynote | 14 Photos

Going back to televisions, the company also unveiled a revised Smart TV 5.0 SDK that plays well with the multiscreen SDK mentioned earlier. This allows content partners like Pandora to incorporate Samsung Connect so that you can broadcast music from your phone to your home entertainment system. Smart TV 5.0 also now supports close captioning for video apps and just better search overall. Last but not least, the Korean firm also revealed the Knox SDK that lets corporate workers bring their own Galaxy device into their work environment without compromising security.

We've barely scratched the surface of what Samsung has released to the developer community today, and we're sure devs are chomping at the bit to get at the new tools. David Eun, Executive VP and head of Samsung's Open Innovation Center, said on stage that he hopes all this development will result in better convergence between devices, stating that "we are well on our way to the connected home." While we can't say that'll actually happen, we do admit we're excited to see what consumers will get out of today's announcements. Interested parties can check out the press release after the break to find out more.

Update: Courtesy of Android Central, we've embedded the stream of Samsung's keynote presentation, right after the break.

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Samsung Developers Conference 2013: New Tools for a Multiscreen World

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.― Oct. 28, 2013 ― Today at the Samsung Developers Conference (#SDC13), Samsung Electronics released five new and improved software development kits (SDKs) for creating consumer and enterprise apps on its smartphones, tablets and Smart TVs. The new SDKs, available in beta today, exemplify Samsung's focus on equipping software developers with the tools, resources and support necessary to foster a connected multiscreen experience across Samsung devices.

"There are close to half a billion connected devices in the world today, yet a very limited portion are actually connected to each other," said Dr. Won-Pyo Hong, President of the Samsung Electronics Media Solution Center. "Samsung is creating one of the largest connected platforms spanning a broad range of devices that people love and use every day, including smartphones, tablets, TVs and much more. We are clearing a path for creative developers who want to participate in this multiscreen future, and the SDKs we are releasing today give them a way to start creating for multiscreen, and take advantage of our leadership across so many screens."

The new SDKs include a more streamlined Samsung Mobile SDK, Samsung Multiscreen SDK, Samsung Multiscreen Gaming SDK, and a Samsung Smart TV SDK. Also, Samsung KNOX SDK will be introduced and highlighted at the conference.

・ Samsung Multiscreen SDK is an all-new SDK that allows developers take advantage of Samsung's market leadership in smartphones and smart TVs. Based on a cloud publishing system, the Multiscreen SDK includes APIs for one-touch discovery and pairing of devices, which allows for content sharing across devices.

・ A streamlined version of the Samsung Mobile SDK is now available. The SDK now combines 10 individual packages, including the latest groundbreaking S Pen, Media Control, Professional Audio, and Gesture, into a single integrated SDK for easier overall development.

・ Samsung has partnered with Unity Technologies to create the Samsung Multiscreen Gaming SDK. It is a gaming engine built on top of the Samsung Multiscreen SDK that allows game developers to create immersive multiscreen gaming experiences that people play on any big screen TV using a Samsung smartphone or tablet as a console.

・ The Samsung Smart TV SDK lets developers and content partners create applications for Samsung Smart TVs. This version includes WebEngine 2014 for support of next year's Smart TVs, as well as Samsung Connect for multiscreen support. The SDK also now supports SmartHome development, closed captioning so that subtitles can appear in video apps, and improved content filtering and search.

・ The Samsung KNOX SDK provides security and management enhancements, including its unique application container technology. Developers now have the ability to develop enterprisesolutions that enable enterprises to support Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) without compromising either corporate security or employee privacy.

Sponsors of the Samsung Developers Conference include Appbackr, Bitcasa, Box, Centrify, Challenge Post, Charge Anywhere, Cisco, DJ Flying Quadcopters, Gameloft, Gracenote, Immersion Game Pavillion, Intel, Nuance, PayPal,, SAP, Sencha and SOTI.

The Samsung Developers Conference is the company's inaugural global developer event taking place today, October 28, and tomorrow, October 29, at the Westin St. Francis in San Francisco. A live stream of the keynote session and a series of attendee interviews will be available during the two-day conference on AndroidCentral: Join the conversation online on Google+, Facebook, and Twitter with hashtag #SDC13. The official show app, is powered by Topi and available for free on Google Play. You can also stay on top of the latest happenings at the event and connect with friends with the Samsung ChatON app, available on all app stores.

About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in technology, opening new possibilities for people everywhere. Through relentless innovation and discovery, we are transforming the worlds of televisions, smartphones, personal computers, printers, cameras, home appliances, LTE systems, medical devices, semiconductors and LED solutions. We employ 236,000 people across 79 countries with annual sales of US$187.8 billion.

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