According to a new report out of The Information, the already tense relationship between Samsung and Google has begun to worsen thanks to both of their own lines of wearables. The report claims that Google CEO Larry Page and Samsung Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee took part in an a “tense” private meeting at the Allen & Co. conference last week in Sun Valley. The meeting reportedly centered around Page being frustrated that Samsung was investing more in its smartwatches running Tizen than the ones running Android Wear.
Samsung currently sells three smartwatches that run Tizen, including the Gear 2, Gear Neo, and Gear Fit. The company only offers one Android Wear-based smartwatch in the Gear Live. Google wants Samsung to focus its efforts more on Android Wear than Tizen because of the tight integration that Wear offers with the plethora of Android devices on the market.
Google also objected to how Samsung was planning to brand its early Gear watches because it was running a “very heavily modified version of Android.” Google wanted the company to wait until Android Wear was ready before launching a smartwatch.
Discussion during the meeting between Page and Lee also centered around their smartphone relationship, which remains “contentious,” according to the report. Google continues to pressure Samsung to stop developing apps that “mimic” its own built-in Android apps, especially ones that allow you to buy content. Samsung is also, of course, still developing Tizen for smartphones in an effort to reduce its reliance on Google and Android.
The report goes on to explain that while the relationship between the two companies may seem fine on the surface, there is still a lot of tension between the two, with Samsung referring to Google as a “bully” behind closed doors. Tension also still surrounds Android chief Sundar Pichai’s comments that Google was “willing to walk” away from Samsung at CES.