"You force the business to differentiate at higher levels in the stack in more innovative ways," he said. "If you want to have a lot of value add, you need to be very competitive in the open source world."
To this end, Samsung has been steadily upping its contributions to the open software community as its use of the software has escalated. The company started using Linux in 2002 and by 2008, it had gone "full out," using open source to develop hundreds of products.
One telling statistic: In 2010, Samsung ranked No. 27 on the list of Linux contributors, Haddad said. By 2013, it had advanced that ranking to No. 4.