Google convinces Samsung to drop own App suite and tweaks to Android

Samsung with Google

The Touchwiz or Nature UX designed software on Samsung’s line of devices has been getting demonstrably worse as years go by, departing from the look and feel of stock Android by a large margin and the latest Magazine UX release on the Note and Tab Pro line launched at CES seems to have started talks between Google and Samsung which may lead to the brokering of a deal which will see Samsung to drop its own suite of competing Apps and tweaks to Android, at least according to a report from Re/Code.

While the companies have declined to comment, sources close to the matter have apparently told Re/Code that the ‘series of broad agreements’ could see the suite of Samsung Apps – most of which mimic the functionality of far more popular Google based Apps – that have flooded devices in recent years disappear with Samsung possibly looking to push Google’s Play apps instead.

We do, however, have to remember that earlier this week, both Samsung and Google agreed to license each other patents for 10 years, showing a broader show of co-operation which could prove promising for Google, although with Samsung having invested in a competing music service – Mspot – as well as other services for TV and Movie distribution, it’s not clear at this stage what concessions Google will have to make this push towards a focus on Play Apps and Services happen.

With Samsung by far the largest Android manufacturer from the Open Handset Alliance, Google apparently feels that having this behemoth of manufacturing push the Google Play line of Apps and services could also pull other manufacturers – who also have been moving into creating their own App and service infrastructure a core part of their own Android device strategies – back into line with the core vision of Google’s Android mobile OS

With Samsung launching its own Tizen based devices prior to MWC next month, the deal between Samsung and Google is certainly an interesting concept, we’ll have to watch play out from a consumer point of view.

Do you think Google is right to convince Samsung to drop its own App suites, Apps and tweaks to Android? Do you think there is a growing threat to Android and Google’s Play Store services from Manufacturers?

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About the author

Alex has been an avid Android fan since 2011 when he got his first ever device, the Sony Ericsson Xperia x10 mini. Alex has been working within the Industrial Relations industry for the last 6 years, before that 6 months... (read more)


  • AJ

    I guess some people want Google to enforce Apple-like rules and regulations and keep the stock look.

    This and the Moto sale to Lenovo makes me wonder if it’s connect.

    • kjmci

      Yeah, but when Google acts in a controlling manner and pushes its weight around it’s TOTALLY DIFFERENT to when Apple does it. Don’t you see?!

    • Brian

      I think this and the recent patent licensing between Google and Samsung had something to do with this. It will be interesting to see what happens to Android with Google and Samsung combining?!? sources.

      • vtwkang

        To me there’s no coincidence here. Google exits the hardware business where it was directly competing with its OEM partners, then strikes a closer relationship in software and patents with its largest manufacturing partner. It makes sense.

        As for Samsung, some of their software customisation was no doubt driven a fear of Google in the hardware business, and with that fear gone, they can scale some of their efforts back. I would expect that their customisations will now be more focused on features that have shown some promise (e.g. the S-Pen).

  • steelbytes

    it’s good for the users (more standardisation), don’t care if it’s good for samsung

  • deanomalino

    This would be really good if this happens. I would actually buy a Samsung then. It’s just ridiculous how many duplicate Samsung and Google apps there are that could confuse the consumer!

  • http://espadav8.co.uk Andrew

    with talk of this and the 10 year deal I’m hoping that it will me some of the tweaks will work their way back into stock Android. I love the idea of the Samsung multi window feature and it would be great to be able to use it on my tablet.

  • Carbs

    My first experience with touchwiz is on the Note 10.1 (2014) and I have to say its horrible, I’ll be glad to see as much of this crap go as possible. I would love stock Android with S-Pen and multi-window support if possible.

    • Mikhail Cass

      S-pen and multi window are part of Samsung’s tweaks. If Google asks them to drop it that means we won’t get it in so ck Android. S-Planner is much better than googlrs calander (if only for s-pen/hover touch). Even exclusives like beepn’go are awesome and s-health.
      I agree they should get rid of Samsung wallet,translator and the Samsung hubs and chat on.

      • Carbs

        There certainly be a place for some tweaks, but they do need a major clean out of most of it.

  • http://twitter.com/gfieldew geoff fieldew

    Samsung’s memory chips are impressive. As is their marketing. The really impressive stuff comes from Google & Qualcomm these days.

  • John

    Will Samsung be providing apps that are exclusive to the Samsung Apps Store on the Google Play store after the potential shut down of its own app store?

    For example, apps such as Samsung Music Hub, S Health, additional TTS language packs, Sketch for galaxy, story album etc…

  • Steve Offer

    Samdroid is so much better than blandroid; only catch is that a replacement launcher is required. My Nexus is horrible compared to my Samsung.

    • etherspin

      there are almost no manufacturers that use stock android – if this changes the incentive to further develop holo design will be there

  • whispy_snippet

    AT LAST.

    Brilliant, BRILLIANT news.

  • Grumpigeek

    Samsung’s S-Planner is really good. It is the only Samsung app I actually use.
    Keep S-Planner (& S-Pen & Mutli-window for those that use them). The rest of the Samsung apps are not necessary.

    I have replaced all the other Samsung apps, including the launcher, with Google Play apps.

    • Daniel M

      Really? I use the S Health suite on a continual basis

  • Phill Edwards

    Alex, please get someone to proof read your posts before they’re published. Paragraphs don’t have to be a single sentence. Full stops are marvellous things. Articles shouldn’t be streams of consciousness. I’m not the first person to raise this.

    • http://ausdroid.net/ Daniel Tyson

      Actually I proof read that one Phill. Thanks for your input.

      If you’re interested in writing please submit a sample. Cheers.