Samsung's partnership with Best Buy to create stores-within-a-store aims to it can integrate the multiple devices and screens just like Apple. The big question is what Samsung's rival and neighbor, Apple, inside Best Buy will do.
Initially, Best Buy's deal with Samsung looks like a winning combo. Best Buy gets big brand commitment and Samsung can show its integration chops. The Samsung Experience Shop will cover more than 1,400 Best Buy locations in the U.S. By early May, 900 Best Buy locations will be covered with Samsung shops.
According to a statement, the Samsung outlets will show off smartphones, tablets, laptops and connected cameras as well as offer account set up and support. These shops will be 460 square feet at the most. A "Samsung Connected Solutions area" is supposed to illustrate how devices connect and content can be shared across various screens.
These Samsung dedicated areas will have trained staff who can guide tech buyers. For Best Buy, the Samsung areas are a nice way to nix deadbeat DVD and CD spaces in a store.
The catch is that Best Buy will also have Apple shops next to Samsung. It's a consumer and bring your own device showdown within Best Buy. Analysts were generally upbeat about the deal for Best Buy. However, Oppenheimer analyst Brian Nagel said there's a risk Apple may find new partners. He said:
Best Buy and Apple have historically had a very healthy relationship with a number of big box stores having a dedicated Apple section. With today's announcement, there are risks that Apple may choose to more aggressively partner with other retailers such as Staples, Target and Walmart going forward.