Update: Lookout has confirmed the deal. PR is at the bottom of the post, if you're interested.
The assortment of apps you have to wade through when powering on a new phone for the first time is about to grow by one. Samsung is expected to announced on Wednesday that is has licensed Lookout's anti-malware suit for all its upcoming Android devices. No word yet on whether or not current devices will get Lookout as an update.
Some users take it upon themselves to install apps like Lookout, but others don't want to put up with the added hassle and battery drain. If a phone isn't full of random APKs from around the internet, the risk of true malware infection is very low. Most users that know their way around Android will probably disable Lookout in the system settings. However, this move might not be directed at regular consumers. Samsung is pushing business features in its phones with features like the Knox data segregation system. Lookout is yet another way for IT to lock down a phone.
Samsung doesn't just sell high-end phones, though. Lookout could also be important to users in the developing world, where Google's services are spotty or non-existent. These are the people most likely to install apps from shady places around the web where Android malware is a legitimate concern.
This is far from the first time a company has forged a deal with anti-malware makers. Carriers like T-Mobile and Sprint have done so in a limited fashion. However, this is the first time an OEM has decided to add antivirus across all its devices, and Samsung is by far the largest maker of Android phones. The phone maker might have more to say when the deal is officially announced.
SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Lookout, the leader in mobile security, today announced its expansion into business with a stand-alone mobile security offering for business coming later this year. Additionally, Samsung Electronics and Lookout announced a partnership to bring Lookout to mobile devices with Samsung KNOX.
“We’re excited to partner with Lookout to bring an additional level of security to Samsung KNOX. Lookout is the leader in mobile threat protection, and through attachment scanning and safe browsing they are uniquely equipped to address business mobile security and the evolving challenges in the BYOD movement,” said Dr. Injong Rhee, Senior Vice President of KNOX Business Group at Samsung Electronics.
Samsung KNOX is an end-to-end solution that provides security hardening from the hardware through to the application layer. Lookout for KNOX will include real-time, cloud-based scanning to protect against mobile threats from email attachments, web browsing, and any type of file sharing services.
“Samsung is a market leader in mobile devices for business, and we’re excited to work together to bring Lookout to KNOX,” said John Hering, CEO of Lookout. “Protection against mobile threats for devices in the workplace is critical, and we’re excited to announce we’re expanding to address the unique needs of businesses.”
Lookout’s expansion comes at a critical time. With one in three businesses allowing employees to use devices for work according to Gartner, mobile security is more important than ever. In fact, more than half of Fortune 1000 companies have employees using Lookout on their mobile devices already, and more than 45 million people worldwide use Lookout. With protection against mobile threats critical for businesses, Lookout will introduce Lookout for Business, a standalone offering, later this year.
In partnership with Samsung, the KNOX platform retains full compatibility with Android and the Google ecosystem while engineering fundamental security and management enhancements, including its unique application container technology that enables enterprises to support both BYOD and Corporate-Liable models, without compromising corporate security or employee privacy.