Season 1, Episode 13

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This is a transcript of one episode of the Samsung Developers Podcast, hosted by and produced by Tony Morelan. A listing of all podcast transcripts can be found here.


Tony Morelan
Product Manager, Samsung Developers

Instagram - twitter - LinkedIn


Swalé Nunez
Head of B2B Developer Relations, Samsung Electronics

In this episode of POW, I interview Swalé Nunez, Head of B2B Developer Relations for Samsung. Swalé is part of the team that just launched AppStack, the cloud software marketplace for businesses. Not only do we talk about the benefits for small and medium business being able to manage their workplace apps, but the advantages for partners that are bringing their software solutions to AppStack.


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Topics Covered

  • What is AppStack
  • SMB (Small and Medium Business) Benefits
  • SaaS Partners
  • AppStack Industries
  • COVID-19 Impact
  • AppStack Partner Advice
  • Getting Started

More About AppStack

AppStack is Samsung’s business software marketplace for business owners, managers, and IT professionals. We help you find, subscribe to, and manage cloud apps for use on Samsung and third-party devices. AppStack gives your team easy access to the software you need to grow, whether you run a startup or an established company.


NOTE: Transcripts are provided by an automated service and reviewed by the Samsung Developers web team. Inaccuracies from the transcription process do occur, so please refer to the audio if you are in doubt about the transcript.

Tony Morelan 00:02

Hey, I'm Tony Morelan. And this is POW! Podcast of Wisdom from the Samsung Developer Program, where we talk about the latest tech new trends and give insight into all of the opportunities available for developers looking to create for Samsung. On today's show I interview Swalé Nunez, Head of B2B Developer Relations for Samsung. Swalé is part of the team that launched AppStack the cloud software marketplace for businesses. Not only do we talk about the advantages for partners bringing their software solutions to AppStack and the benefits for businesses being able to easily manage their workplace apps, but we also have a little fun discovering the creative and inspirational person that Swalé is, he even trademarked his own name. Enjoy. Hey Swalé, thanks for joining me on the podcast. I have to ask, who is Swalé Nunez?

Swalé Nunez 00:50

That's actually a pretty good question. So I pride myself on a couple of things the most. I think the thing that's dearest to me is Creativity. So if you go on my LinkedIn, it'll say, I'm a human creativity connoisseur.

Tony Morelan 01:05

Oh, wow. So what exactly is that?

Swalé Nunez 01:08

Yeah. But I've always had this deep fascination for human creativity. And so I've studied it in every regard in the sense of like, professionally, or in structure, but in reality, is just my own personal. As I as I make my way through this thing called life, I kind of jot down notes and just kind of study creative people. And because of that, I myself have done some creative things. And there's this this scientist work or inventor, I can't remember his name at the moment. But he once said that, if I tell you all the things that I've done, they don't necessarily go well together, and it will discredit my credibility. So mindful of that, so if I tell you the things I've done either in art or in music, or entertainment and architecture, and all these things are like Yo, who is this guy? Oh, wow, for this conversation. Let's just say I'm a creativity kind of sore.

Tony Morelan 02:03

Wonderful, wonderful. I can't wait to learn more about you. So you are with Samsung, tell me what is your title?

Swalé Nunez 02:09

So my official title is head of b2b Developer Relations. And a huge part of that is, has a lot to do with bringing innovation to the enterprise. But not only that, advocating for the developers who are in that particular space, building the technology and solutions that solve real world problems. And I know our main topic today on the podcast is AppStack. So this is something new for Samsung. Tell me a little bit about AppStack. When did they get started? And what exactly is it? So AppStack, if I were to kind of describe it in one line, it's a new, highly curated cloud app marketplace. I think we were officially launched August 19. it for us if there's two particular stakeholders beyond ourselves. It's the SMB customers and in our preferred partners for SMB customers, it's helping them find the right apps for their businesses. But it is also a great accelerator for SMB sales for our preferred partners.

Tony Morelan 03:11

So just in case people aren't aware, can you explain what the acronym SMB is small and medium businesses?

Swalé Nunez 03:18

And I remember the first time I heard it, what does that mean? So, yes, it's small and medium businesses.

Tony Morelan 03:25

So basically, AppStack is a location where partners can post their apps, their solutions online, and then end users such as SMBs. They can go and find their solutions through apps that

Swalé Nunez 03:38

correct? Correct for SMBs, not only fine, so it provides like a central place for our customers to find, purchase, provision and manage your cloud apps. And then from a partner perspective. It's exciting for our customers, because they can kind of tap into our ecosystem, as well as kind of get some benefit from our media. Spend, you know the behemoth that is Samsung. So you said this actually launched back in August, it did it. So it's relatively new. I mean, it's, it's, it's what I'm watching it now because it's something that we've been working on for some time, try and make it as the best create the best product as possible. And one thing I want to mention about AppStack is that it's highly curated. So kind of seeing it kind of develop and now it coming to life and then watch it's like I have a newborn. So it's kind of it's synonymous to that in a sense that I'm watching it kind of crawl and then walk and then seeing it develop it's actually beautiful thing to watch

Tony Morelan 04:37

has to be exciting. So what sort of industries can take advantage of offering their solutions to SMB and users on AppStack.

Swalé Nunez 04:45

So it's not really limited to a specific set of industries. If you have a SaaS solution targeting SMBs, then you should take advantage of it. Whether that's front office, if we think about productivity or marketing applications, we're back Office like accounting payroll, HR, or then also vertical specific rights are vertical oriented like restaurants, real estate and home service. I can think illegal construction. So, again, it's not specific to a particular industry as long as you offer a self-service, SaaS solution that's catered towards SMBs I think we're right there for you.

Tony Morelan 05:23

So what exactly is SAS?

Swalé Nunez 05:25

So SAS is an acronym. It's software as a service. Some you might have heard it in times past as, like on demand software, but it's it is a licensing and delivery model force for applications right where that delivery is based on a subscription base, and the applications generally live on the internet.

Tony Morelan 05:44

Gotcha. So up in the cloud, exactly. Okay. Okay, so an example might be something like Netflix, are they a SaaS service?

Swalé Nunez 05:52

Correct. From an enterprise perspective, if you think of your sales force, Microsoft has a lot of SAS solutions, Oracle, that type of stuff.

Tony Morelan 06:02

So what's the benefit for these partners to offer their solutions?

Swalé Nunez 06:05

There's actually a few, I think the most attractive is our ecosystem. We have roughly 100 million active mobile devices in the US. And that number grows by 12 million annually. 52% is actually an SMB space. So for our partners it, we open up our customer base for them to be able to kind of one increase their SMB sales, and then it's specifically targeted because we understand our customers, we have enough insights to curate an experience for them and then for SAS partners is an opportunity to take advantage of that.

Tony Morelan 06:40

That sounds great. So what is it that your team at Samsung can do to help partners be successful?

Swalé Nunez 06:45

So we talked about from a from a just opening up our customer base and increase the spotlight on your applications. We also offer assistance in regards to getting you ramped up or getting you into the AppStack marketplace itself. From a technical perspective with API integration, and in some cases, and we take this as a case, case to case basis where we can offer supplemental dev support, right. So kind of help you get to that to the point where your app is actually featured in apps that.

Tony Morelan 07:15

So what else is the team doing to help drive awareness for these partners to be successful with their apps?

Swalé Nunez 07:21

Yeah, so we, I spoke earlier about the media spend. But beyond that, we've done AppStack ad campaigns across Samsung social channels. We've also done a lot of ad campaigns across various social media platforms, right. So on your Facebook and your Instagram and your Twitter, you'll see a lot of AppStack ads. And on top of that, our general manager Taher Behbehani, he's done several public facing engagements and announcements and as has been a speaker had a few of those engagements. And he used that as an opportunity to kind of introduce AppStack to the general public as well.

Tony Morelan 08:01

As you know, there's been a big shift because of COVID-19. And the pandemic, just, you know, not only you know how we function in our daily lives, but you know, around business and how businesses are functioning. So can you tell me how COVID-19 has impacted the AppStack?

Swalé Nunez 08:16

Yeah, I mean, COVID is affected everyone in everything, right? I think this is new to everyone. And unfortunately, it's become our new normal, right. And there's been impact both from a customer and up and a partner standpoint, and seeing that we particularly cater to SMB, and that segment has been significantly impacted. It's definitely had impacts on knapsack as a whole. But what we found that the number one priority for SMB is moving to the cloud and mobile SAS apps and they're looking to, to access their sass apps on mobile devices, right. So in a way, Samsung is helping to facilitate that right so giving them the opportunity to not only become touch list, but Be able to access the apps that they need to run their businesses, especially in this time, making that more seamless. And without with less friction, given the circumstances.

Tony Morelan 09:09

So I love what you said when you when you kind of use the analogy that this is a AppStack is like your baby that's starting to grow. And so I didn't see it crawl. Yeah. So I'm sure now that you've seen some companies put their solutions on AppStack, and you've seen that grow. So what sort of apps are you excited about that you're seeing on AppStack?

Swalé Nunez 09:29

If I were to step back for a second? I was a part of the a lot of the business side of this and the relationship and partner on onboarding, right. So now went from being a consumer of these applications, to actually being involved in more of a business conversation, right. And a lot of these applications or applications that I use myself, in particular, G Suite or Canva. So being given an opportunity to now engage them from this perspective was not insightful It was It felt good, um, and especially from a consumer perspective, right? It's like there's this thing you never want to meet. You're either the people that you admire, because in fear that they're not who they claim to be. In this particular case I get, especially from us being technologists and having developed in times past are being developed as developers now to kind of have these conversations with these companies that are actually doing it and doing it right. It was actually refreshing and it was it felt good. And a lot of these, like I said, Canva G Suite, sign now paymo there's a huge I use the term huge loosely because it is curated but there's a few applications that I'm excited about and the ones that are there now that we that we launched it are definitely on the list, and there's definitely a few coming that I'm also excited for like click up fresh books, but in all Is the just whoever's on board at this moment? I'm truly excited to have them be a part of it. Because again, there's some personal satisfaction that I get from this as well.

Tony Morelan 11:09

Are there any types of apps that aren't on AppStack yet that you would like to see brought to the platform?

Swalé Nunez 11:16

Um, I think we've done a really good job of identifying the ones that we want to be a part of it. And we've identified these specific categories specific to our SMB customers and what their needs are. And I think we haven't made announcements in a few of them that are in the pipeline. But if I took a quick glance at those that are in the pipeline, and I'm excited about the list that's going to come after eight. This week, when we talk about app sec and the partners that are involved. It is a it's a dynamic list, right? So it grows as we go along. So I'm excited with the ones that come in. I don't want to let the cat out the bag, but there's a few good ones that I am looking forward to.

Tony Morelan 11:56

Excellent, excellent. I can't wait to hear about that. So tell me what are the end user benefits related tap stack.

Swalé Nunez 12:04

So, as we mentioned before it AppStack provides for SMB customers, a central place for them to find purchase provision manager cloud applications. But beyond that, it, it comes at a discount, right? So it's, it's also a central place to manage all your subscriptions. So what that does is it takes the focus off the other things and gives you gives those our SMB customers the ability to kind of work on building their business, right and not have to worry about everything else. But just focus on building your businesses and making it the best business they can be given the circumstances. So again, from, from a business perspective, it centralized your subscriptions, those subscriptions come at a discount, and it gives you an opportunity to kind of bundle your software and your hardware together and make that that purchasing flow more seamless.

Tony Morelan 13:00

Yeah, I could see that be really beneficial for businesses just starting out when, you know, maybe they may not have a lot of revenue being generated at the moment, but they still need to get their business in order. Definitely. I know, you know, it's big announcement when the AppStack just launched. Tell me Is there anything else, you know, news related that's coming up that we can get excited about any events that you can, you can share

Swalé Nunez 13:26

outside of the fact that it is the best cloud out marketplace out there. Um, honestly, I like I said earlier, I think I'm AppStack is big, or what makes AppStack important and relevant and beneficial, are the partners we get on board. So our excitement comes when we can when we have partners that we know our SMB customers need and if we were able to kind of deliver on that, going back to my original when I started about being creative, creative and designing my approach to creativity and design is human centered, right? So we build for our customers we build for the people, we design solutions for the people who are trying to solve problems for, in this particular case, our SMB customers. And for them, we're identifying the key applications and solutions they need. So exciting news is we have some really good applications that exist in AppStack now. And we will continue to deliver on those partnerships. So that to make the life of an SMB easier.

Tony Morelan 14:34

So let's talk about companies that want to become a partner. What's the first step? You know, what do they do to offer their solution on App

Swalé Nunez 14:42

stack? The first step is to be the best in your category. Um, I want to re-emphasize how important having apps that be curated is to us into our customers, right? So if you're the best in your category, we'll come knocking and beyond that, not only a SaaS service that specifically targets SMBs, it has to be self-service, right. So it shouldn't have to require a lot of hand holding for onboarding. Because once again, the whole idea here is to make this not a burden for SMB customers and make it as streamlined as possible, right? So the less touch, the better. So be the best in your category, top two, top three, and also have a solution that, again, is self-service that anyone can quickly onboard from a subscription and provisioning standpoint. I'm pretty sure you can hear that.

Tony Morelan 15:42

Yeah, we can we can hang out for a second. That's funny. So tell me what's the best way for companies to learn more about AppStack so they can get started?

Swalé Nunez 15:53

The easiest way and the most resourceful that has the most resource available to you is It has everything from the list of companies or partners that we already have. It actually gives you insights and roadmap into the partners that are in the pipeline. It has a Q&A, it has additional resources and write ups to help kind of get you up to speed with AppStack as quickly as possible. So that would be the first place to go to learn more about apps. I say the URL again, one more time, it is

Tony Morelan 16:32

Excellent. And we will link to that in the show notes. I'm super excited about you know, the new launch of AppStack and all the solutions that are out there and looking forward to, you know, new apps being released. Let's talk a little bit about you know, what was your journey to Samsung.

Swalé Nunez 16:50

So, um, oddly enough, um, I there was a point in my life, I wanted to give up technology as a whole, I was a dotnet developer. And I literally, I was in a position where I'm like, Yo, this cannot be it. And I was trapped behind my desk writing code, which I'm a fan of writing code, the creative aspect of it, and being able to kind of create these things, from just lines of code. But I had opportunity to travel the world, and then be more of a from a presenter side of things, right. So I still developed heavily. But there were these gaps, where I can kind of take the technology that I either developed or was a part of, and then present them to people in these kind of roadshows from a technical perspective, so I had a stint at blackberry doing that. And then, a few years ago, I think roughly six years ago, Samsung was focusing on enterprise mobility and that was a space that I was in and there was an opportunity there. So I got tapped to come over to Samsung, and then that's where it kind of myself Samsung journey started. And it started from a solution innovation perspective, enterprise mobility, this mashup, and then it transitioned into I've always advocated for developers, I think developers, in especially in larger corporations, they might not necessarily have the voice that they need, especially in the enterprise space. I live in the enterprise space and why it's why it's so important to me, because I think enterprise gives you an opportunity to solve real world problems, right? consumer side is fun in it. I mean, there's some interesting aspects there. But you can't truly appreciate a second, until you are you see from the lens of a first responder, somebody in the healthcare industry, right. And if we can help build applications, to help kind of make their jobs easier, it'll ultimately make the world a better place, right, because they are the ones that are out saving the world. So I've advocated for developers and that advocation for developers gave me an opportunity to start doing b2b developer focused engagements kind of creating, opening up tools and resources to support them. And then kind of taking this Developer Relations on the road and then kind of having enterprise focus tech for good engagements and events, specifically for those particular developers from a Samsung perspective, and Samsung has been really good at providing the resources and then helping me kind of bring this thing together. We're still it's still a work in progress. But I'm happy with the progress we've made. And even though there's a long way to go, I think we're definitely moving in the right direction.

Tony Morelan 19:38

Very well said. I actually first met you. And it was about a year and a half ago. So I'm in the West Coast. And you are, I'm in New York City, New York City. Exactly. Our team came out to New York to teach a class at one of the local universities. But then also we did a meetup group in the evening where we had a bunch of developers come out You are a part of the team. That was on a panel at that event that was a lot of fun. You know, my takeaway from that event was meeting the community that was there a definitely a very vibrant crowd that came to that meetup. I actually had a really nice conversation with a young lady who was a developer, building some apps very much around the issues that she was medically having. She had some medical issues going on. And here she was creating an app not, you know, for the wider community, it was specifically for her current so that she can try and make her life better, just was it's just so exciting when you actually can get face to face. So I'm, I'm really looking forward to you know, once we all get through this pandemic, and we can get back out to doing these live events, because that's where the people are. I mean, that's really where you start to touch on them. Outside of all of this work that you do, which is amazing, I appreciate what you'd like to do for fun.

Swalé Nunez 21:00

So, I think you did a really good. I'll use your last sentence as a segue. But fun for me is traveling, right? It's how I get inspired. And I'm all about democratizing innovation rather than kind of finding it, having it come from everybody. And then having traveled the world, a small part of the world because I mean, there's a lot of world out there still left.

Tony Morelan 21:26

Sure, sure, let you what you

Swalé Nunez 21:28

brought up a good point about touching the people. In me just being fascinated with human creativity. I love to travel and up until this year, I would backpack every year I'd pick a part of the world to go really load up my backpack and then go touch the people go out and kind of explore and, oddly enough, I was I just got back on a plane after six months. A weekend ago, right and it felt different. I remember I used to tell people getting on a plane was Getting in an Uber for me, I do it so much that it doesn't have the same impact or significance. And it wasn't until my most recent trip, which is last weekend that I got on a plane and I, I fell in love with getting on a plane again, right? I forgotten how that felt. And I remember as a kid, so I'm originally from Belize. I was born and raised in Belize. I didn't come to the states that I was that a man technically. But I remember I would come to the States during the summer, and two weeks away from my actual departure date. I already felt the excitement. I knew what I was going to wear. I put out everything because I was so excited about it. And then as I became an adult and traveled so much, the excitement didn't come from the anticipation anymore. It came from being in the actual places, right? Sure. But with this trip and being away from it from flying and traveling, I fell in love with the idea of anticipating traveling again, right so it felt good. I was nervous. I didn't know what to expect, but it went well. So support to the frontline workers, everybody who is creating at least kind of actively from our doctors, to our nurses, to the grocery store workers to the airline employees, everybody who is making this as normal as it can be given the circumstances. Yes, definitely

Tony Morelan 23:21

very well said. So if people want to contact you, or the AppStack team, what is the best way for them to do that?

Swalé Nunez 23:29

So I'd recommend the same URL I said earlier, There's a be a partner and there's contact information there as well. me specifically, my LinkedIn is Swalé. There's accent over my E. And you'll notice on my LinkedIn, it is a registered trademark, so it's widely and a registered trademark. And you might find that odd but this is my mind again, I actually have my name trademarked. Wow. And I went from when I was a kid. It took me over Wow, to really appreciate my name to the point where to now where I truly appreciate my name, and I don't want anybody else to kind of misuse it. So on LinkedIn, it's Swalé and the trademark symbol.

Tony Morelan 24:10

That's wonderful. And you know, your name is very memorable.

Swalé Nunez 24:13

Thank you. I appreciate that.

Tony Morelan 24:15

The year and a half ago when I was at that event in New York, I got to say, Yeah, I probably could not remember many of the other names. But yeah, could not forget your name. And thank you excellent character, wonderful personality. It's been an absolute joy to have you on the podcast. So thank you

Swalé Nunez 24:28

very much. Oh, and I appreciate the platform. I appreciate the opportunity. But not only that, I, one of my things, and I've said it a few times on this on this podcast is that I advocate for developers, because I understand that their voice is not necessarily hurt as much as it should be. I've always believed that. developers should be a part of RND for any corporation or any entity or any organization. So I will continue to champion you because you are creating a platform for developers and this is we need this, man continue to do this. And please do not stop doing this. And I, whatever I can do to kind of help amplify your voice and this platform, let me know. And I'll do my best to do that.

Tony Morelan 25:14

Truthfully, the main reason that I ended up coming to Samsung for those that don't know, my past, I was a freelance graphic designer for, you know, well over 20 years, never had a corporate job always worked for myself. And when I started designing apps and selling them on the App Store for Samsung, just as a side gig to see how much Samsung would reach out to me, it's just this one individual, this this very small developer, you know, selling some apps, seeing how available they were with me making you know, direct phone calls, Samsung started inviting me out to meetings to help improve their software, and all one I can't believe this is Samsung, reaching out to me, I'm just one individual and I'm like You know what, I think I can go work for this company. So I put behind my business. I've been working now it's getting close to two years now I've carried that momentum. As far as making myself available to developers. I am always, you know, shocking people on like YouTube when they post a comment, you know about one of my videos asking a question, sometimes within minutes, I'm giving them you know, a public reply. And they're just like, Oh, my gosh, I can't believe Samsung just replied debate. Yeah, that just shows you how a lot of our team, you know, not just our team, your team. It's kind of like the thing with Samsung. We definitely are supporting our developers and want them to know that, hey, we can talk to you. We want to work together and make our solutions even better.

Swalé Nunez 26:40

No, no 100%. And I want to say this, and it'll help all the developers and the future partners who want to partner with AP second is Samsung in general. One thing you brought up is kind of making yourself accessible. Having had to kind of reach out to a lot of these partners it's difficult to find the right email address or contact information. To get it to the right person, right? Sure. And a lot of them is just like support email address that's available. But as you grow your business, whether from a development standpoint or an enterprise or a startup standpoint, be mindful of the fact that you want yourself to be easily accessible, right? Because there's partnerships that you may lose because they don't know how to get in contact with you. So be mindful of that. And I've always said, if tomorrow I started my own, either dev shop or mountain startup. On the first page, there's going to be either at the bottom are a prominent location, contact information to reach me if you want to reach me, here's how you reach me. Because that is important. There's a lot of people were looking to do business with you looking to partner with you and then what you need to make that seamless as possible.

Tony Morelan 27:50

I love that. So with that said, would you like to share your email?

Swalé Nunez 27:53

Yes. That's it. That is my email address and I answered email. So if there might be a delay, but I will definitely respond.

Tony Morelan 28:08

Well hey again, while I absolutely appreciate you taking the time to join me on the podcast today, thank you. Have a good one.

Outro 28:14

Looking to start creating for Samsung, download the latest tools to code your next app, or get software for designing apps without coding at all. Sell your apps to the world on the Samsung Galaxy store. Check out developer today and start your journey with Samsung.

The POW! podcast is brought to you by the Samsung Developer Program and Produced by Tony Morelan.