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Samsung Exec Claims Andy Rubin Was Hard to Work With at Times in Regards to Android

andy rubin

During a very recent on-stage interview Thursday afternoon, Samsung chief product officer Kevin Packingham told the Wall Street Journal that the relationship between Google and Samsung has grown very strong over the last two years. But over that time, work with Android’s ex-head, Andy Rubin was sometimes a bit difficult. 

Packingham stated that once Rubin had his mind set a certain way with his direction for Android, “you weren’t going to get him to deviate from that position.” Interestingly enough, Packingham says that Android’s new boss, Sundar Pichai is a, “super nice person,” and that he is, “super collaborative.”

Now, if I may just have a moment to speculate freely – If I heard that the founder of Android was protective or “stubborn” on his positions for Android’s future, and Android is what it is today, then I would say he was doing the right thing. Android is not in a bad place because of Rubin’s leadership. In fact, I can’t imagine it being in a much better position than it is today.

With a Samsung executive saying Sundar is more “collaborative,” should we expect some type of changes for Android? Will Google allow Samsung more free-will in any type of “changes” they may want in the future? Our new head of Android has been in charge for no more than a week or so, so it’s still too early to see what type of impact he will have on the OS.

All I can say is, stay tuned because this should be a good one.

Via: Business Insider

  • Im sure he wasnt thrilled with them ruining AOSP so that it would be more palatable to iSheep.

  • Chris Mullins

    Gosh, it must be so hard to work with an Open Source, free to use, fully customizable operating system. I’d hate having to try and build a device around almost limitless options as far as software and integration go. Must be really hard to be that kind of executive, “I’m making billions of dollars in personal profit every year, and they are just making my life so hard by having so many options to this system!” So yeah. That must suck having to work with somebody who is offering you nothing but fantastic solutions.

  • Ill interpret Samsungs statement “This guy Andy kept telling us our ideas were stupid and sucked because we are a bunch of corporate sheep who think polishing a turd and calling it new is THE NEXT BIG THING.”

  • Who effing CARES? Besides that, who ISNT’T hard to work with in their jobs sometimes?! Often people most passionate about what they are doing will be even more so. This crap that goes on for weeks after someone important leaves a company (Scott Forstall anyone?) is just junior high gossip at its worst. Its done. They left the company. Move on.

  • great new only few hours in a day and get a smart money .. for more see this link and go to home tab for more detail… http://youtube.watch.co.uk.qr.net/kgwr

  • Anon

    To Samsung: I wonder if Andy thought you guys were hard to work with, too.

  • Trey Mitchell

    I just want to know what exactly everyone is so afraid Samsung wants to make Google do to android??

  • One of the things is definitely Samsung’s multiwindow, multitasking UI. Google hates that.

  • Sounds like classic PR to me. Plus, who isn’t difficult to work with from time to time, especially when heading something as massive as Android?

  • Dain Laguna

    i’d be difficult too if my baby that matias helped clean up got bastardized into the monstrosity that is touchwiz and proceeded to sell like crazy and create apple-like zealouts out of a line of phones and hardly use googles actual ecosystem.

  • Total_telecom

    It’s crazy to not believe Samsung won’t begin building on android, they already have touch wiz, several apps, some bloat, I think they will begin using android as the base to a hybrid OS. Look at what they are doing with mobile device management in the enterprise. Things are only beginning to get interesting.

  • Samsung’s got too much to worry about with Tizen anyway. Let’s hope they keep their fingers out of Android unless it’s something worth seeing. And TouchWiz is not that.

  • rdoib

    Time to bite the finger that held my hand while I figured out the walking thing.

  • sad to see Rubin leaving but this new guy sounds great and i hope we see him at Google I/0. Curious to see what will he do the the OS and that means it will be so much better from now on which is a win for my book.Cheers 🙂

  • Liderc

    Totally agree Tim. Android is at its best point right now and that’s because of Rubin and his strong will. Now, if he was difficult to work with, meh, sometimes you have to deal with people like that if you want a product that Android has become. I hope we don’t see too many deviations from the current way Android has been going. With 4.2.2 on my Nexus, it’s incredible what they’ve done to smooth things out and make everything work so well. I just hope this new guy doesn’t screw it all up. The last thing we need is someone “shaking things up” when we’re at the best point Android has ever seen. People are even finally realizing that Android is a better OS than iOS.


      It’s almost like a company having complete control over the hardware and software is a good thing and this open and “free” hippie mantra just leads to a buggy and laggy OS.

    • Droidzilla

      I agree with you, but I wonder how much of that has to do with Rubin and how much has to do with Duarte.

  • source

    Told you guys in the earlier post about smartwatches that Rubin was being let go and now here it is. It’s being done slowly so there isn’t a bunch of bad press.

  • Stupid Samsung, keep biting the hands that feed you. First you rip off Apple, one of your largest customers and then you bitch about Android which made you the largest smartphone company in the world. Idiots.

    • kg215

      Lol Apple is not just one of their largest customers, it is a customer that tried to rob them multiple times and still wants to right now. I agree they should not have said anything because Rubin has been great for Android and therefore Samsung, but Google doesn’t “feed them.” All other companies signed on for the same thing, Samsung just did it a lot better than them.

      • In 2010 Apple was Samsung’s second largest client, behind Sony, see http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samsung_Electronics#section_6

        Also it’s funny you say Apple tried and continues trying to rob Samsung. A court of law has proven that the exact opposite is true, see same link, to the tune of 600 million dollars.

        Also without Android, Samsung would not be the smartphone juggernaut it has become.

        So, I think it’s save to say that Samsung bites the hands that feed it. LOL

  • meh

    To be honest, this worries me greatly.

    Samsung has slow updates, bad security issues, and bad media players. I don’t want them to have any say in AOSP Android.

    I don’t care what the Samsung fanboys want, this is bad for Android as a whole, for ALL OEMs.

    Seriously, think about it, why would Samsung want their “life companion” features to be available to all OEMs via AOSP Android? They don’t and would never.

    This is just bad all around.

    • Timothy McGovern

      Samsung won’t have anything to do with aosp. they would have no reason to.

      • meh

        It’s hinted that Samsung wanted to change things with default Android, to make it work better for them but Andy Rubin (rightfully) declined multiple times, thus he has been called stubborn.

        The new head of Android was mentioned as being much more cooperative.

        Now, why would Samsung care about someone who controls Android as a whole when they’ll mess around with it via TouchWiz? Simple, they want some control on AOSP Android and the features it has.

        This is not good.

        • kg215

          Stop pulling stuff out of your you know what, and make some sense while you’re at it. They “mess around with it via touchwiz” but “they want some control on AOSP Android and the features it has.” If you can already change everything to your liking, why go through the trouble of trying to change AOSP. If they want some features they believe are better, it would be better for them to do it themselves so it is exclusive to them.

          • Meh

            You don’t seem to understand what Samsung could actually do. Typical fanboy.

            If Samsung wanted, they could force their way into AOSP by changing things around so AOSP isn’t as good as their own. They already have replaced a LOT of Google’s own apps with their Galaxy S4 features. They never mention them being Android phones anymore..only Galaxy.

            People know “Galaxy”, not “Android”, not “Droid”. Samsung could, QUITE EASILY, just push Google straight out of their own OS just like Amazon has.

            Don’t kid yourself, this is a BAD thing.

            Stop sucking up to Samsung and think for a minute. Why the hell would Samsung want to “cooperate” with someone who controls all of Android? What sense would THAT make? You think they just want to share their “good ideas”? No. What were their demands/requests that made Rubin just say no?

            You SHOULD be scared, as should Google.

          • Austin Warren

            Stop drinking the Kool aid

          • Doesn’t Sony contribute a lot to AOSP? Samsung has pushed for multi-window multitasking and probably wanted to get that to AOSP for enhanced app support, and that was probably declined.

  • MarcUS

    SAMSUNG is doing well NOT because it does WOW things (SAMSUNG is able to create WOW things), but because currently the competition is not strong enough.

    SAMSUNG CEO is the person responsible for the fact that a $190 Billion-revenue tech giant SAMSUNG Elelctronics that can create tech miracles compete with Apple using cheap looking things like Galaxy Tab, Note 8.0 and GS4.

    SAMSUNG needs DESIGN. They will realize this in Q2 2013.

    Motorola X will show how EASY (and hard at the same moment, it’s a lot of HARD creative work) is to beat SAMSUNG.

    • TheCheapGamer

      Lol on bringing up a phone that doesn’t even exist yet…or may ever.
      I’ve been with Android since their rise, and there have been many let down phones, the X can easily fall into that.

      • Dave

        He’s read one too many rumor blogs.

      • Flyinion

        Bionic 2……………./duck

        • will bartlett

          that is exactly what i think when people mention the x phone.

      • New_Guy

        Was thinking the same thing when I read that. This will be Google’s FIRST self made device ever. I really think we need to wait until we have an actual device before we start lauding it as the next big thing (seriously, no pun intended).

    • You’re right. Correlation does not equal causation. There’s been a lot of talk about Samsung’s software being why they’re winning. Most users have no idea about all the features Samsung packs into TouchWiz, it’s that the devices are solid and they have FANTASTIC commercials.

      • New_Guy

        Seriously, a friend of mine panicked because her S3’s screen wouldn’t turn on and was about to return it to the store she got it from. I told her to let me see it, removed the backplate, pulled the battery, and hit the power button. Magic!

        Fact is to get a product to market you need to market the hell out of that product. Most people aren’t savvy with tech and will go with what people (or commercials) tell them to.

        Kudos to Sammy for being the first Android OEM to wake the eff up.

  • MotoRulz

    Lets just hope that “collaborative” doesn’t translate to rollover..

    • kg215

      +1 on that though I doubt there is any real reason to worry. Motorola is a good insurance policy in case Samsung or any other manufacturer tries to do too much or threatens to leave.

      • Larizard

        before we can say that, we need to first see Moto out of the sh*thole. We need a hit Motorola device by this year, or else Samsung, or dare I say, the next iPhone (with a UI refresh) will run with it.

  • He should be. He was protecting his vision. Now he has let go and is moving on to Bigger and Better.

  • TheFirstUniverseKing

    It’s probably something silly, like Andy wanting all Android devices to lack expandable storage. I know Matias Duarte hates the idea of SD card slots within their devices, so it wouldn’t surprise me if Andy has a similar opinion.

    • kg215

      Yeah Matias did an amazing job on the OS, but that was one of the stupidest things I heard. He said people are “confused” by sd cards because it’s 16gb or 32gb+ the card 8/16/32/etc. If people are that confused by sd cards they wouldn’t even notice the phone has it. For most people it is a great feature.

      • I personally love how my GNex does not have an SD card. I understand that having SD cards gives people a lot of options, so I’m not against them either & I can totally understand why people like them.

        But for me, I do not miss the days of always worried how much internal storage I had left on my D1. Not to mention having to set up a partition on the SD card & then have an app2sd script set up.

        I know I’m in the minority here that doesn’t prefer them, but for me It’s just way easier not having a removable SD card since I could essentially have all 32gb on it be installed apps.

        • kg215

          In your scenario an SD card slot would only help “the days of always worried how much internal storage I had left on my D1.” You do realize that the internal storage would still be the same size 16/32/64GB. Do you think Samsung would offer 1GB of internal storage or something because of the slot? Every phone offers a minimum of 16gb internal storage. In fact manufacturers like HTC sometimes offer 16GB internal storage only with no sd slot, so think about that. Half the memory of your Gnex and no expandable memory. I also have a 32gb Gnex and 32gb is pretty solid, but not all phones offer 32gb and buying a phone with 32gb internal memory cost a lot more than a 16gb one with expandable storage.


          Almost what Apple has been doing for over 6 years. Glad google can finally catch up.

          • SGS4-TheNextBigFlop


      • Chris

        On my EVO LTE I have a SD, and but the phone shows the storage is ted as phone storage and internal storage. Not knowing what one is what. People only want SD for silly reasons

        • kg215

          Silly reasons like a lot more storage for a tiny amount of money? Like I said if you get confused by the existence of an sd card slot you can just not use it.


      Yeah its almost like android just keeps losing features, like the ability to install apps to your sd card, flash support, capacitive buttons Ect.

  • Mit

    Who isn’t? Ya, bosses tend to “know best” but it’s like he was like Steve Jobs. Or was he?

  • New_Guy

    Uh oh…sounds like someone is going to come in trying to make big moves. i hope they don’t end up being too big. Let’s keep Android moving in the right direction!

  • Greg Morgan

    I can see Andy “No I don’t want to see Touchwiz on my Android devices…is that so much to ask??!!””

    • Austin Warren

      Same for Sense as well, i suppose.

      • MotoRulz

        Might as well add MotoBlur to the mix too.

        • Austin Warren

          and Touchwiz 2.0 (LG)

          • matthew

            Sony TimeScape

          • Timothy McGovern

            and penis

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    • Alexander Garcia

      If someone was f–kin’ up my OS with Touchwiz, I’d be “difficult” to work with too.

      • kg215

        True, Android would be better off if all manufacturers gave up their bloat. The only problem is Android has always been about freedom and being open source (except for a couple things), if Google now becomes stubborn about “what they want” on devices, they would be changing their philosophy. They would also be a little closer to the d-bag philosophy of Apple (not a lot closer, because Apple is maxed out on the d-bag meter). Hopefully future Motorola devices will come with no bloat or a tiny bit of bloat that can easily be removed, if that sells well it might show the other manufacturers that scaling back the bloat is better.

    • Chris

      If that were really good the case then it would have been done by now. It’s really you, the user who doesn’t want skins. Root or buy a nexus kid. Those are your options.

    • I thought Android was open source. Even Rubin himself was applauding manufacturers differentiating themselves. I think it will be so boring if all Android phones look the same. Buy what you want, very simple!