Samsung may be planning to cut back on its oft-criticized Android customizations. A new report from Recode claims that the company recently met with Google to begin working out an agreement that could see Samsung's software move closer to Google's vision of Android. Discussions reportedly began after Samsung unveiled its Galaxy TabPro at CES. Google executives were apparently so displeased with the major changes in the tablet's Magazine UX — which has been compared to Flipboard and Windows 8 — that they felt compelled to open a dialogue with the number one Android manufacturer.
It's unclear what the exact outcome of those talks will be, but Re/Code's sources say Samsung may consider dumping Magazine UX entirely in future hardware. It may also put a greater spotlight on Google's own applications rather than pushing in-house apps like ChatON on its customers.
A source told Re/Code that the Samsung–Google relationship has gone through "a huge change, a sea change in the last few weeks." On Sunday, the two companies announced a broad patent cross-licensing deal that will see them share key intellectual property — another indication of an improved relationship. We've reached out to Samsung for comment.
Update: Samsung tells us that it "will continue to identify and provide differentiated and innovative service and content offerings on our mobile devices." The company's full statement follows below.
Samsung strives to deliver great user experiences through our mobile devices and, as such, we also offer consumers a wide selection of differentiated service and content offerings. On Samsung’s Android devices, these offerings include Google services in addition to a variety of services offered by carrier providers as well as Samsung's own proprietary services.
To continue our momentum of delivering great user experiences and bringing greater value to people’s lives, Samsung will continue to identify and provide differentiated and innovative service and content offerings on our mobile devices.