Samsung to cut back on tweaks and apps after pressure from Google?

Samsung to cut back on tweaks and apps after pressure from Google?One of the latest developments in the world of Samsung’s Android devices is a little something called Magazine UX, which ironically looks a lot more Windows Metro than what we’ve come to expect from Android.

Oddly, having debuted just a few weeks ago alongside Sammo’s gigantic 12.2in tablets, Magazine UX could be one of several Samsung thingies to get the chop after intimate talks with Google.

That’s the word according to recode.net, with credit going to “Multiple sources familiar with the companies’ thinking”.

The sources say Google and Samsung sat down at CES 2014 to begin “hammering out a series of broad agreements that would bring Samsung’s view of Android in line with Google’s own”.

Specifically, we’re told that Magazine UX will be dropped, or at least altered, while Samsung’s home grown apps will get the chop, with Sammo devices instead spotlighting Google’s suite of services.

Samsung would say only: “To continue our momentum of delivering great user experiences and bringing greater value to people’s lives, Samsung will continue to identify and provide differentiated and innovative service and content offerings on our mobile devices.”

Which is a very fancy way of saying nothing much at all.

The question is: what’s in it for Samsung? A Nexus device, perhaps? Surely Google wouldn’t want to risk irking its big player unless it had something to sweeten the deal?

In the interest of competition, we’d like to think this was all an indication of Samsung and Google struggling to get on the same page, but of course the pair has recently ironed out a 10-year patent deal, so we can probably look forward to Google and Samsung working closely – and staying on top – for some time to come.

Read more about: Android

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8 comments

Pondlife  Jan. 30, 2014 at 13:15

Maybe what's in it for Samsung is that they stop wasting money developing octagonal wheels and use the rounds ones and can then focus on developing things that matter. So then they can get their updates out faster and decrease the bloat making devices feel speedier so keeping customers happier and maybe sell even more.

Maybe they got to nudge google to develop a few things they wanted rather than do it themselves. Maybe even Motorola going will sweeten it a bit. The Moto G must hit the low end Samsung sales a bit or certainly their prices.

It's not as though last years add ons were widely seized on as being vital, in honesty I can't remember any of them, though I can recall neat features from motorola and LG.

JanSt / MOD  Jan. 30, 2014 at 15:56

what’s in it for Samsung? A Nexus device, perhaps? How would that be a
bonus for Samsung? Samsung rake in the vast majority of Android-generated profits.
A Nexus device generates some appetite for the also-rans.

Tbh, I don't see Google going all strict on Samsung (and others). If they limit approaches to differentiation, how would anyone be able to tell apart one Android device from another?
That IS a problem WP/Microsoft have already had to deal with - when their entire range looked - more or less - the same...

lcurdie / MOD  Jan. 30, 2014 at 19:32

Yeah, I agree that Samsung doesn't necessarily need a Nexus device, but it wouldn't do any harm to stop the also-rans getting a shot. The Nexus 4 and 5 have done LG a world of good, at least in terms of reputation.

And let's not forget that Samsung paid people to badmouth HTC, so clearly it believes every little helps, even when the competition's floundering.

As for limiting approaches to differentiation, this is the thing I don't understand about the Google Play Edition devices. What's the message with those? That Google's Android "vision" is best? That "approaches to differentiation" amount to bloatware? Should all manufacturers embrace stock Android and eliminate fragmentation?

JanSt / MOD  Jan. 30, 2014 at 20:12

Yeah, and HTC paid people to badmouth Samsung, and to teach phonestore staff why Galaxies are more badder than Ones and Desires...

Pondlife  Jan. 31, 2014 at 01:19

That IS a problem WP/Microsoft have already had to deal with - when their entire range looked - more or less - the same...

They fixed that?

Pondlife  Jan. 31, 2014 at 01:30

As for limiting approaches to differentiation, this is the thing I don't understand about the Google Play Edition devices. What's the message with those? That Google's Android "vision" is best? That "approaches to differentiation" amount to bloatware? Should all manufacturers embrace stock Android and eliminate fragmentation?

The message is that some want that hardware but they'd rather not have sense or touchwiz slowing the device down. So manufacturer gets sales they may have otherwise lost and consumer gets something closer to what they want. It's a matter of erm choice, I know this is a difficult concept for an Apple obsessive...

JanSt / MOD  Jan. 31, 2014 at 06:50

Have MS fixed the problem that all WP handsets look the same? Yes - by annoying all WP device makers not called Nokia... Fewer phones that look the same. Case closed.

Pondlife  Jan. 31, 2014 at 21:02

No as Nokia have just filled the gaps.

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