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Samsung’s JK Shin Says There is No Friction Between Samsung and Google


One of the first people that we saw at Samsung’s Unpacked event last night was their mobile chief, JK Shin. After giving us the first official look of the Galaxy S4, Shin left the event up to their paid performers, but the Wall Street Journal caught him for an interview afterwards and grilled him on all sorts of things. When asked about their growing Android dominance and Google, Shin said, ” We like Android and we plan to continue our good relations with Google. I don’t think it’s correct to say that there’s friction.” 

With Samsung growing so huge in the Android market, many speculated that Google might be worried if they had intentions on possibly leaving. With these new words, Shin somewhat reassures us that leaving is not currently their intention. When asked if their many legal struggles changed how Samsung designed their phones, Shin mentioned Air Gesture and that their engineers worked to “develop unique features internally.”

The WSJ also asked Samsung the question we were all thinking – why develop a phone with Tizen as an OS when you have Android? Shin replied that it’s always been Samsung’s plan to work with multiple software companies, saying, “There are different needs from our customers and the market for third-party OS.”

All in all, I think it’s safe to say we don’t have to worry too much about Samsung going anywhere. They seem pretty invested in this OS.

Via: WSJ

  • Droidzilla

    “There is no friction.”

  • enigmaco

    They are not going to shoot themselves in the foot with google that would be just bad PR

  • kronikings

    Google just needs to make a badass phone that will blow the galaxy series out of the water. Motorola can and will. Hopefully soon.

  • Aaron

    WP8, BB10, FirefoxOS, Ubuntu Touch, and now Tizen? I get Samsung wanting to branch out and own their entire platform like Apple, but these other four platforms are having a hard enough time building out their ecosystems against the duopoly of Apple and Google. It seems to me that it will take Samsung years to flesh out an ecosystem for this OS.

  • FelisLachesis

    If Google and Sammy aren’t having any relationship issues, why is Sammy replicating a lot of native Android features with something that’s wrapped around TouchWiz?

  • Ghee Buttersnaps

    It’s true, there is no friction, only business decisions.
    Neither Google nor Samsung want to be too dependent on each other in the smartphone game. Both have laid groundwork to take care of their own houses for the future.
    Google has Motorola and is making Android polished enough to not need skins (KLP should be a beast) and Samsung has Tizen while creating software that you’ll eventually see on Tizen phones along with their Android phones. They’ve already said you’ll see software on other phones unless restricted by hardware. I think Samsung mentioned Android once or twice last night.

  • possomcrast

    Obviously he’s going to say that. Slowly, Samsung is making android look like their own OS. Then they’ll release a big new Galaxy device with their own software but it will look exactly like what they skin Android to look like and no average consumer will know the difference. That would actually be a really smart way to beat Android but I’d never support it.

    • Aaron

      They would have one problem with this plan; the Play Store. If Sammy was using a fork of Android like Amazon then app compatibility wouldn’t be an issue since it would still be Android. They could build their own app store and maybe still run the Play Store. But with Tizen, long time users would have to re-buy all their already purchased content. That would be enough to keep me with Android.

      • possomcrast

        They have the App Hub. They could give out “15 dollar free credits for app transferring.”

        • Aaron

          That would be something. I guess so long as you have the major 3rd party apps covered and a decent media selection that could get them going.

          • possomcrast

            I wouldn’t like it at all but I could see Samsung screwing over Google like that.

  • Rodeojones000

    Honestly, I’d prefer Samsung leave Android and go to their own OS.

  • Uncle Paul

    All I heard in my head as he was speaking was.


  • Sammy makes all of the slick google innovations chintzy and apple like.

  • imns

    Invested in the OS and using Google’s services are not the same thing

  • Joel Mathew
  • EC8CH

    If Samsung where to quit making Android phones, 90% of Galaxy buyers would buy their next phone from one of the other Android phone manufactures. Loyalty is to the OS, not the hardware manufacturer.

    • Geoff Johnson

      Unfortunately, no.

    • I think this is partially correct, but maybe it’s more like 50-60% of Galaxy users who would bail. It’d have a lot to do with implementation, I suspect. Do you have to re-purchase your apps? Can you still access the same services / the same quality of services? Is the system generally as usable as Android? If so, most users won’t likely care. If not, Samsung could stand to lose a lot of sales.

  • chris125

    It is always smart to have a plan B in case something does happen.

  • Joe

    lol, that’s why everything that was talked about at the release last night was “s” this and “s” that. email, translation, voice, and even their own media store. Samsung doesn’t necessarily NEED the android name to survive.

    like editorials have said, these new sammy phones aren’t android. they’re all samsung and i’m sure there are people that think touchwiz is the OS.

    but hey, it is what it is.

    • blix247

      Samsung might provide the shingles with touchwiz, but the rest of the house they are laid on is built with Android. When you see sMaps, sNavigation, sSearch, sNow and sTube, and Samsung’s market start to take share away from Google Play, then maybe you’ll have something.

      • Geoff Johnson

        Doesn’t S Voice Drive use a Samsung navigation app?

      • Joe

        there are other methods of getting those things on a samsung phone. buys a mapping company, partner with a different search company, create a seperate youtube app. you’re point doesn’t have much weight.

        i’m saying it POSSIBLE samsung would branch out. not saying it would actually happen. but you can’t deny its not a real possibility.

        • blix247

          They are already actively branching out. They are actively involved in Windows and Tizen.

          My point was that they are nowhere near ready to leave Android completely. How many years did it take Apple to create a maps alternative? Thats with extreme motivation and unlimited budget. Thats only one aspect of what makes Android what it is. They could actively be making purchases and aligning resources to fork Android and leave the Google ecosystem, but that bridge couldn’t be crossed for years.

        • Aaron17Watson17

          Intel is already working on maps

  • Nikhil Rathi

    I do not think they will leave Android..Both Android and Samsung are inter-dependent now..Samsung succeeded with Android and Android became popular because of Samsung..

    • EC8CH

      android became popular because of the OG Droid 😉

      I know.. I was there.

      • I think the og droid is what made people final take notice of android, but think phones like first droid X and first incredible is what made it popular

      • Tirionfive

        Droid became popular because the OG Droid. If you ask anyone, they ask: Is that a Galaxy? Not is that an Android. GS2 was the tip of the iceberg. Very few people (and I know a lot of people) are on verizon. Maybe 5% of my acquaintances/friends Including myself.

        • EC8CH

          Pre OG no one knew what Android was. Post OG every one knew what Android was. That’s when it became popular. Success of subsequent phones including the Galaxies was made possible in large part in the overall popularity of the Android OS that began with the release of the OG.

          • Geoff Johnson

            More like everyone know’s what a DROID is. Is that a DROID? No it’s a Nexus 4…

        • Dain Laguna

          NOW they ask ‘is that a galaxy’.

          but prior to that (and still more often than not) its referred to as a ‘droid’ phone by the average consumer.

        • Aaron

          I’ve never heard anyone ask “is that a galaxy”. I’ve heard lots of people call Android phones DROIDS, though.

      • Rodeojones000


      • my dad still uses the OG Droid :)…and its going strong!!

      • michael arazan

        If Samsung fork’s android and leaves the handset alliance leaving all the Google apps and market I’ll never buy another Samsung device

      • Droidzilla

        In America, yes. In Europe and Asia, it was the Galaxy S. I wasn’t there, but I read about it on the internet.

    • boogie_monster

      the thing is Samsung’s Tizen is very similar to their version of Android (UI-wise) so in few years when they get the popularity that they want they start injecting market with their own Phone sporting their own software. the average user won’t notice it, because “It Look the Same” in their opinion. so if they can achieve that goal it’s just profit for them after that.

      • KleenDroid

        I hear ya, but it’s not like they have to pay for Android.

        • boogie_monster

          Yeah that’s true, but just imagine that they start their own App Store and make profit out of it and most of the Google Services that can gather information and that’s how you’ll make money in the technology business. they are trying to make their own wallet, Translator and etc. and they already made S-voice and other S-products. these are (IMO) are steps towards being independent.

          • Aaron

            But Google’s app ecosystem is significantly larger than just the native apps. Samsung has lots of customers invested in Google’s apps, music, videos, etc.. Ecosystem is partly what keeps people from jumping from Android to iOS, or vice versa. Ecosystem might also be partly to blame for stunting WP8 and BB10’s growth. Unless Tizen can support Google Play like Android can use the Amazon App Store, it might be a hard sell for many users.

        • They do pay or rather they don’t get paid as much using Android due to Google taking more ad revenue from the phone.

      • Aaron17Watson17

        I think you based your answer on a very early user interrace. Tizen 2 looks quite unique. Besides, tizen is the linux foundations OS. Its not samsungs entirely, not everything is samsung made. Theres intel too

        • boogie_monster

          That’s true, but still Samsung is the biggest contributor to the project.

  • Derek Traini

    Refreshing news!

  • r0lct

    He would have to be riding the short bus to say otherwise publicly.

    • KleenDroid

      Hay, wuts rong with short bussez?

    • Richard Yarrell

      Just like in private Google started this story to begin with. I think Google needs to focus more on the platform and the fluidity of stock android user experience. Dipping into the pot bring reservations you can’t have your cake and eat it too like Google is doing. You have your Nexus line devices which people have brought now you have Motorola too and will try to pushing them to be Nexus line too. Samsung has the right to defend their turf and do as they see fit for their business just as Google is doing. Bottom line here Samsung is android plain and simple Nexus sakes are putrid and Motorola products are much more comical.

      • Aaron

        I wouldn’t call Moto “comical”. Unless things have changed with the GS4, Samsung still has yet to figure out radios, or at least how to tune their devices to get better signal strength. I would have bought a GS3 but my friends drops calls and has no signal in places where I still have to bars with my Moto. I’m hoping the X Phone brings Moto back to relevance.

      • squiddy20

        “Just like in private Google started this story to begin with.” What are you talking about? Google said no such thing. Ever. It was the stupid Wall Street Journal that posted an article about how there *supposedly* was tension between Google and Samsung, and yet we have reports from both sides saying there is none. You’re just the gullible fool who believes everything he hears.

        “Dipping into the pot bring reservations” Want to try that again when you can formulate coherent sentences?

        “Bottom line here Samsung is android plain and simple” Except that without Android, Samsung would be nothing in the smartphone market. Idiot.

        • Futbolrunner

          Hahaha +1

  • Smart business move, make phones for 3 different operating system. Android, Windows and Tizen.. So no matter what they are sure to make a profit.

    • Austin Warren

      Not always. Didn’t work for HTC.

      • Samsung, as a lot more money and say than HTC, so I think they could pull it off

    • S2556

      Nokia should take note. I’d like to try one of those with 4.2.2

    • Samsung is dropping windows like it’s hot… lol no sales no one wants windows. Let’s not forget ubuntu coming out soon maybe just another fail and blackberry fail too

    • Aaron

      Don’t want to spread themselves too thin, though. You know the old saying “Jack of all trades, but master of none”. Best to keep it simple and stick to what you are good at.

      • Larizard

        i think they have the money and people to cover all of those OS. It’s all about the target market. Like, in the US, I have never seen a Tizen smartphone…

  • Austin Warren

    Haha, and people thought they were moving away. That’s hilarious.

    • JetRanger

      Hi statements can be 100% the truth and it could still meaning they are moving away. Samsung is starting to create their own ecosystem. They can do this and still keep Android. Whether they will go as far as locking out the Android Market like Amazon does is the big question.

      • Aaron17Watson17

        I really think the entire thing is void. Any smart business will try and distribute its reliance.

    • Rodeojones000

      Right. Because when someone says something in an interview there’s no chance the person being interviewed is withholding info, bending the truth, or flat out lying.

  • bose301s

    If only they were invested in the stock UI and onscreen buttons…

    • Okay enough of this, if you want stock Android the only place you will be getting it is on a nexus. No other Android device will be stock unless you root and rom… Some may come very close. ex. Motorola But none will be fully stock

      • blix247

        That doesn’t mean he can’t say he wants it. The problem the Android ecosystem is faced with is an either/or choice. Either you get the best hardware, or the best software, but you can’t have both. Thats the an advantage Apple has, they can say “Here is our newest phone with our best software.”

        • Yes, when there is only one phone it’s easy to say that.

        • I think the nexus 4 does have some of the best hardware around..( just really hate that glass back >) If they could do what samsung did with the s3. That would be great……

          • If the Nexus 4 had cdma/lte for verizon and more storage, I am not sure many on this site (me included) would care about the S4. Until then, we have to find alternatives.

      • bose301s

        It doesn’t have to be fully stock, if they used stock UI and onscreen buttons I would be happy, they could put as much of their software and stuff on their as they want, just make it look more stock.