WSJ: Google Holds Secret Meeting to Keep Samsung's Android Power in Check
February 26, 2013 3:01 PM
Somewhere Tim Cook and Stephen Elop are laughing
The Wall Street Journal
that Google Inc. (
) is holding an emergency summit at the 2013 Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona. At the mobile industry's top trade show, Google is reportedly meeting with Android phonemakers like HTC Corp. (
) and Hewlett-Packard Comp. (
) about fighting back to prevent Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (
) from gaining too strong a dominant position in the Android market.
I. One Company to Rule Them All?
Samsung currently accounts for 40 percent of Android sales --
more than any other company
. It's also easily the most profitable of any Android device-maker.
Some analysts think Google is fearful that Samsung will leverage its powerful position to try to get a bigger cut of Google's slowly growing mobile ad revenue stream. Sources claim that Samsung currently gets around 10 percent of the revenue from clicks on its devices. A bump to Samsung's take-home percentage could help offset
per-device payments it has to make to Microsoft
) for intellectual property licensing.
hopes to make $8B USD in 2013
via mobile advertising
, Inc.'s (
) iPhone and Android.
Andy Rubin reportedly warned Android phonemakers not to let Samsung get too powerful.
[Image Source: The Next Web]
At a closed-door event, the
reports that their source was in attendance and heard a presentation by Android Chief Andy Rubin. Mr. Rubin allegedly praised Samsung's success, but warned that it could be a "threat" if it furthered its dominant position. Google is reportedly eyeing offerings like HP's $169.99 USD upcoming Android slates.
Samsung in 2012 was the
biggest smartphone shipper
, shipping 215.8m smartphones, almost all of which ran Android. By contrast, Apple "only" shipped 136.8m iPhones. Samsung hopes to ship
In 2011, Samsung only accounted for 15.6 percent of Android tablets, but in 2012 it advanced to 27.9%, becoming a major player
Interactive Data Corp. (
). Samsung passed Amazon.com, Inc. (
) in Q4 2012 to become the largest Android tablet seller (Amazon uses a modified Android build in its "Fire" tablets). Samsung just revealed the
Galaxy Note 8.0
, a hot tablet that is vying with Apple's iPad Mini.
II. Samsung Could Seek Alternatives
If Samsung reacts badly to Google's efforts to keep it in check; it could jump ship to one of a couple rising platforms. It
already has made Windows Phone devices
and has a good relationship with Microsoft Corp. (
). Alternatively, it could opt to test the waters with
a Mozilla OS device
(Samsung's South Korean counterpart LG Electronics, Inc. (
) is doing precisely that). And
then there's Tizen
, a mobile Linux kernel that Samsung is co-developing with Intel Corp. (
For now, Google and Samsung are united by their common enemy: Apple. Samsung will launch its counterstrike against the iPhone 5 on March 14 --
the Galaxy S IV
In March Google and Samsung will collaborate on the massive Galaxy S IV launch.
[Image Source: AndroidSpin]
leaked spec sheet
has been circulating which claims the hot handset will pack:
• 4.8-5.0-inch 1080p display
• Android 4.2 Jelly Bean
• 1.9GHz Qualcom Snapdragon 600 processor
• 2GB RAM
• 16/32/64GB storage options
• Removable SD card slot (up to 64GB)
• 13MP rear-facing camera, w/ "Orb" technology for compressed panorama shots
• 4G LTE support
• Multi-purpose / Dedicated camera button
• Bluetooth 5.0
• 3100 mAh battery
Will the Galaxy S IV be the last major effort between Google and Samsung? It's possible, but at this point it's likely the pair's ties that bind are stronger than those that separate.
"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer
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