Bloomberg, citing industry sources, reported that Google and Samsung are in talks to strengthen the role of the search engine and Google Assistant in the Korean giant’s devices.
At the moment, Galaxy smartphones use their own voice assistant Bixby – it performs voice search, answers simple questions and can interact with elements of the “smart home” Samsung Smart Things. But over the years, users and reviewers have favored Google’s solution – Bixby is localized to fewer countries than Assistant, integrated with fewer popular services, and has less speech perception.
Starting in 2020, Samsung stopped equipping its flagship models with a separate physical “Bixby key”, and a year earlier it allowed users to remap the press on it to launch any application, including Google Assistant. But the integration of the latter into the system is now incomplete – for example, it cannot be activated when the screen is locked.
The exact amount of the transaction was not disclosed, but experts suggest that it could be in the hundreds of millions, if not billions of dollars. At least that’s the order of the royalty that Google pays to Apple every year to remain the default search engine on iPhone and Safari.
Samsung sold nearly 300 million smartphones in 2019 and is still the most successful smartphone maker on the planet. Tighter integration into the operating system of so many devices will significantly increase the audience to which Google can serve targeted ads – one of the largest sources of revenue for the company.AX
Besides Google, Samsung has been developing partnerships with Microsoft for many years. For example, the company integrates a plug-in to connect a smartphone to a Windows 10 PC into its OneUI shell and provides exclusive features, such as uniting the clipboard between the PC and the Galaxy S20. Galaxy smartphones are also rumored to receive special conditions at the launch of Project XCloud streaming service.