Need a chuckle? It seems as though Samsung had the opportunity to invest in Android back in 2005, but passed. Not only did they pass, but they left Andy Rubin feeling silly about even being there. Now that we find Samsung has the largest Android OEM around, it’s a comical twist of fate that leaves us smiling.
In the book Dogfight: How Apple and Google went to war and started a Revolution, Rubin remembers semi-fondly his pitch to Samsung. “’You and what army are going to go and create this? You have six people. Are you high?’ is basically what they said. They laughed me out of the boardroom.” said Rubin about the meeting. After pitching Android to Samsung, he was met with deft silence and confused glances, rather than the subtle enthusiasm he found at Google. “This happened two weeks before Google acquired us” Rubin quipped.
This was in 2005, well before the iPhone changed the course of mobile technology forever. At the time, many were looking for an avenue to get into the mobile space, but had no understanding of how that would happen. Samsung lacked foresight, while Google quickly snapped Android up for around $50 million — now a laughably low sum. Considering the gains Google has from Android, and the widespread adoption, Samsung wiffed hard.
It’s odd to think that TouchWiz could have actually been Android. Samsung could have molded Android as they wished, which would have been decidedly different from what we see now. Still working on androids, Rubin is probably happy things turned out as they did. I’m sure many of us are.