Apple is one such company that buys shares to return capital back to shareholders.
In April, the iPhone maker increased its share repurchase authorization to $90 billion from the $60 billion level announced last year. The company also increased its quarterly dividend by around 8 percent and split its stock 7-for-1 in June.
Samsung's decision may provide a boost to its share price, but ultimately the company must restructure its business for future growth, says Kay.
"Share buybacks are a kind of sleight of hand move because really there's no change in operations of the company at all. It's just a financial maneuver, which reduces the number of shares, increases the earnings per share and makes it appear that their earnings are somewhat better,"Kay said.
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Samsung needs to shed non-core businesses, and use that cash to start looking at investments that will drive growth over the longer-run, Kay added.
O'Donnell is optimistic that the company will be able to get back on track.
"They had a developer conference in San Francisco a couple of weeks back and we saw a side of Samsung that we hadn't seen before," he said.
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The company provided a vision of how they could be a pervasive player, not just in the mobile phones, but in the smart home space, he said. As part of this push, Samsung recently acquired SmartThings, a startup that allows people use a mobile app to control connected devices at home.
"[The vision] was pretty impressive – the general consensus [was] 'wow they are really getting it'."