The end of a beautiful friendship?
Let’s stop ignoring the giant elephant in the room. It’s uncomfortably staring us in the eye, so why act like things are all rosy between Google and Samsung when the latter is so obviously trying to cut ties and reduce its dependency on the former?
Were it not for the multi-billion-dollar stakes of the mobile wars, Galaxy smartphones would have long abandoned Android, adopting instead the slowly rising homebrewed Tizen OS. Meanwhile, since smartwatches fail to grow at the healthy pace predicted by various pundits (another painful truth for Larry Page & co.), the Korean cash-making machine can afford to experiment without losing much in the short term.
Android Wear, Tizen, that stripped-down sorry excuse for an iOS equivalent on the Apple Watch, they’re all essentially the same right now. Crappy and impractical, that is.
Unfortunately for Google, it’s starting to look less and less likely their wrist-worn “ecosystem” will catch on in the long haul. Yes, the newest Android W iteration has progressed by leaps and bounds in the productivity department, but what’s the use if it can’t secure support from the market’s three leading hardware producers – Apple, Pebble and Samsung?
With yet another proprietary software-powered timepiece in the pipeline, Sammy drifts farther apart from Big G. And now the company’s one and only Android Wear gizmo can no longer be purchased through the Google Store. Temporary hiccup? Manufacturing-exceeding demand, maybe?
Not a chance. It’s just that the Gear Live was never aggressively pushed by its makers, and so it’s headed for early oblivion. Should you expect a sequel? We highly doubt it, unless you consider the Tizen-running Gear A.
In case you’re still interested for some mysterious reason, the Gear Live remains available on Amazon at $199.99. Given the far superior, way sleeker Moto 360 costs $20 less via the same retailer, it truly seems impossible for Samsung to clear up lingering inventory.