Editorial by Andrew Kameka on Wednesday April 16, 2014.
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Amazon has a unique feature in its most recent tablet and TV that offers customers live tech support when someone runs into a problem or needs help figuring out how to do something. Samsung and other manufacturers could easily do the same thing with Google Helpouts. Released last November, Helpouts is a live video chat service experts use to offer tutorials for a fee or free. The platform works on Android, iOS, and the web. Individuals can sell their knowledge or brands can better support their customers without relying on confusing websites or third-party tutorials.
Samsung clearly recognizes the value of Google Helpouts because the Korean manufacturer is using it to provide tips and troubleshooting for its home products. The Samsung Smart Personal Online Training (SPOT) program connects Helpouts users to agents who guide them through using Samsung refrigerators or HDTV's. Customers can ask questions when they have a problem or get general tips about how to take advantage of their smart TV's and appliances. Why can't they do the same for their smartphones?
Samsung has its hands in many pots, but few pots are as simmering as the company's smartphone business. In a few weeks, Samsung will likely declare that the Galaxy S5 has sold tens of millions of units and is its most successful phone ever, and reports from every analyst in the world suggest Samsung is a leading manufacturer. The company obviously has a large consumer base, so why not help them better use their devices with SPOT Mobile? Phones can be just as confusing as appliances, so we know that there are millions of people who could benefit from being able to reach out for help. I constantly field calls or messages from family members trying to figure out how to do something on their device, so I'm sure there's always someone looking for help in using their Galaxy phone. .
It would make perfect sense to setup a system that allowed someone to get live help from a trained expert. A system that operated Monday to Friday from 10 am to 7 pm ET and supported Samsung's full portfolio for free. Such a system already exists if you need help watching TV or storing your food. Samsung ought to consider offering the same service to the device that people use inside the home and out.
Andrew is based in Miami, Florida.