Should Samsung Ditch Android? - InformationWeek

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Should Samsung Ditch Android?
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Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
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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.
Tom Murphy
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Tom Murphy,
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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?
Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
10/24/2013 | 6:08:13 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
That's all well and good if your app is really compelling to the user. But we're at a point of app-overload. iOS 7 took 5GB of space. When a 16GB iThing doesn't have a enough room, what's going to go? Not pictures or Facebook/Twitter. It's the apps that are used rarely. Then where's your business if all your eggs are in the app bucket and your mobile site's gone begging?
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
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10/24/2013 | 8:41:49 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
For Samsung, the threat of switching is more valuable than actually doing so would be.
Shane M. O'Neill
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Shane M. O'Neill,
User Rank: Author
10/24/2013 | 10:05:48 PM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
Google and Samsung both benefit so much from their Android partnership that the status quo seems like a good bet. Google would be nuts to force Samsung's hand toward Tizen and lose its no. 1 hardware partner. And Samsung -- a consumer darling -- has to worry how Tizen would be greeted by the mainstream. I foresee lots of furrowed brows and confused looks. I'm all for bold moves but Samsung is sitting too pretty to take this kind of risk.
David F. Carr
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David F. Carr,
User Rank: Author
10/29/2013 | 3:10:14 AM
re: Should Samsung Ditch Android?
Samsung has become such a significant player in the Android ecosystem that it deserves a seat at the table with Google when major design decisions are being made. Improving the partnership and angling for more favorable terms seems to me a better strategy than walking away.


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