Should Samsung Ditch Android? - InformationWeek

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Should Samsung Ditch Android?
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anon6454756288
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anon6454756288,
User Rank: Apprentice
10/23/2013 | 1:53:27 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
Samsung doesn't control the Android ecosystem. Google does. Samsung is just a hardware vendor. Every single Samsung device is being used by an individual whose primary mail is probably gmail, is used to google maps, has possibly purchased google play apps, watches youtube videos, backups photos automatically to google+ and uploads data and config to google drive. Knowingly or not.

If Samsung stabs google and create its own operating system, google would "kindlefireize" them. How many of the customers described above would switch from android, from their paid apps, from google maps, youtube and gmail to another ecosystem with an order of magnitude worse maturity and content? My guess is not so many.

Android is here to stay. As both of you say, it's all about the ecosystem.
anon7385571217
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anon7385571217,
User Rank: Apprentice
10/23/2013 | 2:27:31 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
Samsung trying to change its "destiny" by moving away from being dependent to Android is like dreaming of winning the lottery. I believe Android didnt grew by itself but because it was supported by a lot of hardware manufacturers.

I agree that this could change if Google will start changing the game and starts competing with its partners through Motorola ala Microsoft but I dont see if it will make sense that they do considering that my impression is that part of Android's strength is the support of several hardware manufacturers and the openness of Android allowed these manufacturers to customize the OS to differentiate itself and it came to a point that consumers move from one manufacturer to another but not Android. It has become a battle of who customizes Android best, hardware aside. Manufacturers are competing with each other to get market share with Android. Why would Google want to be a target if it can just sit and watch, throw a bone or two in the form of updates just to keep things going?

MS' case is different in my opinion because Windows is Windows, its only a battle of who makes the best hardware for the OS, nobody customizes the way it looks like Android and it came to a point that PCs are declining because people are going for a more inexpensive alternatives to do basic computing like Apple or Android tablets. PCs is starting to become something for serious work and this is not something we do 24/7. So to my impression, MS had to step up and set a new trend on the hardware side to sway the users back and I believe it is working with Surface, manufacturers started stepping up in the design of their devices for Windows and with Intel working on better low voltage chips, produced promising devices.

I believe Google understands the importance of its partners and I do not believe they will do anything to hurt its relationship with them. They need Android to dominate the mobile OS market and I doubt Motorola can do it alone just the same as manufacturers need people to buy their devices and no other OS can do that.
Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
10/23/2013 | 4:32:56 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
I think the primacy of apps will eventually end as HTML5 improves in its ability to use device niceties like cameras and gains dev mindshare. Apps are space hogs and let's face it - most people use only a small fraction. Why not wipe the slate clean and go browser-centric?
Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
10/23/2013 | 4:35:15 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
That makes sense now, but what if Google starts to need to boost revenue? It's smart to walk before someone makes you run.
Somedude8
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Somedude8,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2013 | 4:49:39 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
I enjoyed this article, very cool format, especially having the rebuttals. Both authors made convincing arguments as well. Would love to see more articles in this format, its a winner.
As for Samsung, I own a TV, phone, and get this, a refrigerator made by them. The idea of them maybe speaking all the same language is very nerdly compelling. But that language would not have to be Tizen.
"provide a compatibility mode for Android apps" could be a massive undertaking, with an end product that never quite works right, especially given the Wild West landscape of Android.
I can't see it making sense for Samsung to leave Android.
rradina
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rradina,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2013 | 5:00:22 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
We've been hearing that for years. I agree with the premise and strongly desire it to come true but why hasn't it happened? What makes HTML5 different from other attempts? Java tried and it was a miserable failure. Connections were too slow and even with Microsoft's DLL-hell in full bloom, Sun exhibited a stunning competency to recreate it. (A Java upgrade often broke applets that worked with the prior version.) I'd argue the closest we came is Flash. Unfortunately Apple refused to allow it on iOS and single-handedly killed it.
rradina
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rradina,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2013 | 5:11:18 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
If Samsung has the expertise, they should try rolling their own. However, I don't recommend they stray from remaining compatible with Android apps. Otherwise it's DBA (not database admin, dead BEFORE arrival). As Microsoft can attest, no apps, no demand, no sales, no developers (rinse and repeat). In fact, I'm surprised Microsoft hasn't tried building something that performs a similar function to WINE on Unix by allowing Android apps to run on WP. They could call it ANDE, make it open source and watch the community port it to iOS for the jail-break crowd. I read the latest Lumia premium phablet has 2GB of RAM. That ought to be enough to allow for some overhead -- especially if it's loaded once and shared by multiple apps.
Researcher32
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Researcher32,
User Rank: Apprentice
10/23/2013 | 5:59:59 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
Google bought Motorola to be able to tightly control hardware, OS and software -- the Apple model if you will. Samsung knows this and will move away from Android...though it won't be easy.
Tom Murphy
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Tom Murphy,
User Rank: Author
10/23/2013 | 6:25:38 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
IMHO, Craig's line about fixing it before it's broken actually stops a bit short of today's reality. The slogan is "break it, then fix it." That said, I don't think Samsung would be dumb enough to shift to Tizen unless it has to, and I don't think Google is dumb enough to force the move. Afterall, Google built Droid as much as a hedge against Microsoft's foray into hardware and a threat to Apple more than as a means of generating cash for itself -- and that strategy has worked briliantly on both fronts.
Yes, Google bought Motorola, perhaps as a fallback plan as Microsoft grows cozier with Nokia or to build customized Droid phones for the police/military market. But it's hard to imagine Google betting its entire Droid franchise on launching a new consumer phone into an already jam-packed marketplace where margins are shrinking and the future is, at best, even more competitive. Instead, it should be delighted that so many manufacturers are tripping over each other to take on that risk, propelling Droid to its industry-leading position.
I can't think of anything that Samsung could do to shoot itself in the foot than to abandon the 650,000 Droid apps out there and try to convince consumers that they should take a chance on an OS with almost no apps. (That doesn't seem to be going well for Microsoft so far.) When consumers show up in retail stores, the first question is: "Droid, iOS, or, perhaps, Windows?" Not "Samsung, Apple, or Nokia."
Would Samsung want to risk its current success on adding Tizen as a distant fourth horse in the OS race when it's already running out front in hardware?
Number 6
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Number 6,
User Rank: Moderator
10/23/2013 | 7:03:17 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
Look at the reaction now by Samsung Galaxy users to the Samsung "bloatware" that's included on their phones now. Check out the sarcastic review comments on Samsung Push Service, for example.
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