Tel Aviv cultivates world class design & UX talent
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Tel Aviv cultivates world class design & UX talent

We caught up with Dane Howard, our Global Head of Design & Product Experience. He recently visited Samsung NEXT in Tel Aviv. We asked him about his experience visiting the region and some of his observations while meeting with talent.

Samsung NEXT: What brought you to Israel?

Dane: We have four distinct software products that we’re building in squads distributed around the world. Two of them are based in Tel Aviv. I’ve been speaking with these teams for many weeks, and it was time to visit the region, meet with local design talent, and get more deeply immersed in the progress they are making. In addition, we’re aiming to build a foundational UX and design team in Tel Aviv to serve these growing products. It’s a very exciting time right now.

Samsung NEXT: What did you learn during your trip?

Dane: What is immediately evident is that this is a region of the world that is perfectly designed for making amazing software. There is SO much talent, energy, and excitement about technology and enabling new kinds of experiences. This is especially true for both of our team leaders, Yosi Taguri and Avi Barliya, who have set the tone and pace for both of our product groups in the region.

I’ve also been meeting with dozens of designers from across the region and sharing the story of what is happening here at NEXT. I have been explaining what we are building, the rationale behind it, and the massive potential for impact. Needless to say, the story is resonating.

Samsung NEXT: How is Samsung NEXT tapping into the broader design community in Israel?

Dane: Several large companies have been in the region for over a decade, and there is an amazing startup culture in Tel Aviv. I sat down and met with designers that have worked for these large companies, as well as those who have worked for several startups. This talent pool is motivated, fast moving, and energetic.

What is exciting to me is that Samsung NEXT combines the best of both worlds, by matching the pace and craft of startup culture with the scale and impact of a large company. I can’t wait for this message to reach a wider UX and design audience across Israel.

To introduce this narrative, we hosted about 100 Design and UX leaders for a panel discussion, and began to share several common challenges facing designers today inside organizations. It was a great conversation about organizational structures, working with Product Management, Trends, and design education.

Samsung NEXT: What’s Next for you and your team(s)?

Dane: I’m thrilled to announce that we will be growing our Design studio in Tel Aviv. We’re very excited about this and look forward to the opportunity to make

further announcements soon. We will also be growing our footprint in the San Francisco Bay area, which will give us the ability to design and build world-class software experiences across several key areas:

Automation
The paradigm of “Command and Control” computing is shifting toward more automated completion of tasks. Intelligent user context, which combines Data and machine learning along with IOT frameworks, are reaching scale to seamlessly automate experiences with confidence. We are exploring opportunities in this area.

Supply & Demand
More efficiently connecting supply and demand will reduce excess provisioning and capacity waste. Sensors and computing at the connected edge will enable real-time tracking and of supply and demand. Therefore,we are interested in opportunities around decentralized computing and more efficient distribution of capital.

New Interfaces
New Human-Machine interfaces will allow tech to more seamlessly integrate into our life to bridge the digital and physical worlds. Advances in context, speech, computer vision, and intelligent context will mean we no longer need to fumble with desktop user experiences that were made portable, but instead can leverage truly mobile experiences. As a result, we are interested in opportunities around AR.

I can’t wait to get back to Tel Aviv and to have the opportunity to share more of the progress the teams are making there.

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