Some pretty insane rumors are floating around the internets right now. People who have spoken to MeeGoExperts and NetbookNews say that Samsung is looking to take over MeeGo development, which was originally lead by Nokia, but sadly progress has recently slowed to a crawl after the Finnish handset maker decided to focus on Windows Phone. The rumors go on to say that Samsung would stop selling Android devices at some point in the future since they’re not too pleased with the legal issues that Google’s mobile operating system is currently facing. That doesn’t jive with what JK Shin, President of Samsung Mobile’s Global Operations, said after Google purchased Motorola. Here’s a bit of a refresher: “We welcome today’s news, which demonstrates Google’s deep commitment to defending Android, its partners, and the ecosystem.”
Considering Samsung already develops their own mobile operating system, known as “bada” (yes, lowercase “b”), which by the way they don’t license to anyone, why would they want to contribute to an open source project? MeeGo, as it appears on the Nokia N9, is gorgeous, but it’s not MeeGo, it’s Maemo 6 “Harmattan”, which just so happens to be MeeGo compatible. It’s not as if Samsung can just grab some source code and produce a device that works exactly like the N9, which is what many of you are thinking right now, aren’t you?
Note that Samsung ships approximately 1 out of every 5 mobile phones sold right now, so if they do decide to create a platform that competes with what’s already out there then they’re actually in a somewhat decent position to make a dent on the market. The question is what exactly would Samsung gain by owning the software layer? Yes, Apple is the shining example everyone likes to point to as what happens when a company has tight vertical integration, but while Apple has proven themselves to be incredibly competent at making software, when has Samsung ever come off as innovative in the bits and bytes department?