It will require that users log-in to access work applications, email and other corporate functions. IT managers could customize KNOX to require additional log-ins after a set amount of time has expired.
BlackBerry recently announced Balance, which created dual personas in the BlackBerry 10 OS used in the new Z10 smartphone. But BlackBerry adds another layer of security by requiring that IT shops set up BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 software on a server behind the corporate firewall.
Other mobile management companies offer hypervisor software to create dual personal containers. Red Bend Software said its approach will be trialed in the Galaxy S III for enterprise users.
Wagner said some existing Samsung devices could be retrofitted to include the KNOX features. More details are expected in the next month.
Some analysts have said that BlackBerry, with its new Balance approach and other measures, offers greater security than Samsung.
Asked how Samsung compares with BlackBerry, Wagner responded: "The competitive landscape is is such that we provide choice in form factor, price and MDM vendors and we believe we can go much faster that our competitors."
Android is already running more than 70% of smartphones sold. Samsung sells about half of all smartphones, which puts the company in a powerful position to help workers and IT shops, Wagner added.
KNOX will also offer IT shops the ability to manage smartphones using ActiveDirectory, and will provide secure boot technology so that data is not lost during the vulnerable period when a device is being booted.
KNOX will continue the SAFE tradition of offering IT shops VPN protection, as well as 256-bit encryption in the Android BIOS.
Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His e-mail address is email@example.com.
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