Samsung Moving from Waterfall to Agile to Shorten Galaxy Development | TechWell

Samsung Moving from Waterfall to Agile to Shorten Galaxy Development

McDonald’s or Burger King? Coke or Pepsi? Agile or waterfall?

For an extended period of time after the inception and growth of the agile methodology, there was a debate concerning its viability within a team or organization compared to waterfall. Which would produce faster, more consistent results? Which would lead to a higher quality product?

More and more, agile seems to be the conclusion major teams are arriving at, and Samsung is the latest company taking advantage of agile to get its products to consumers at a greater speed. A new report from Korea suggests that Samsung has spurned its old waterfall ways to move toward a more agile approach, and the results are being seen right way.

The latest Galaxy S7 smartphone, which is one of the most widely lauded devices on the market, is expected to launch in early 2016, but the development time is being shortened by one or two months thanks to agile. The increased collaboration, introduction of continuous testing, and push for shorter cycles are allowing the team to move development along at a more reasonable clip.

Greater details about the nature of the phone are yet to surface, but moving away from the more precise development planning that goes along with waterfall seems to have pushed Samsung in a new direction. Even if we are seeing more agile success stories, there’s still a grand debate taking place. Speaking to StickyMinds, e-commerce expert Calvin Baldwin explained why these two methodologies are at odds.

When it comes to agile, the client/business team gets in the kitchen while you're cooking the meal and provides feedback while you cook. Furthermore, agile can result in a redistribution or change in project authority and decision making. These possibilities make waterfall advocates very uncomfortable. As a result, people are naturally at odds with agile because they don’t understand it, but they know it means change and change scares many people.

Change can be terrifying, whether for large or small teams. And once you do expand and continue to change, it can be difficult to maintain your agile mindset when the teams aren’t quite as small and nimble as they used to be.

Still, change is necessary. The Samsung Galaxy S7 likely will launch ahead of schedule thanks to the company observing the adjusting development landscape and accepting this new approach. Change doesn’t always lead to success, but taking a chance on agile can yield major benefits companywide.

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