Samsung’s penchant for bloatware is notorious. Ever since… well… since forever, its phones have been loaded with half-baked applications that replicate and replace those found in the stock operating system.
Samsung Browser, for example, is nowhere near as good as Google Chrome. Similarly, S Memo is overwhelming by the standards of notetaking apps, especially compared to the clean and simple Google Keep. And that’s saying nothing of TouchWiz, which demonstrates that the company’s fondness for child labor isn’t just limited to its factories; there’s probably a few toddlers working in its design department, too*.
As more and more phone manufacturers embrace a pared-back, stock Android experience, Samsung has steadily detoxed from its bloatware addiction.
Google has made several enhancements to the Google Play Music service, exclusively for the benefit of the Samsung customers.
Perhaps the biggest change is that Galaxy S8 owners can upload a colossal 100,000 tracks to Google’s servers, which can be streamed from anywhere. This is raised from the 50,000 tracks that other Play Music subscribers get.
Galaxy S8 owners also get a three-month trial to Google Play Music, provided they hadn’t subscribed to the service previously. Samsung is also promising integration between Play Music and Bixby – its hilariously-underdeveloped Siri alternative. This will be available when voice commands eventually reach the public.
Google Play Music was also the default music player on the Samsung Galaxy S7. That was merely the product of Samsung choosing to use a better alternative to Samsung Music.
This, on the other hand, is indicative of a tighter partnership between Samsung and Google, and is that Google’s recognizing the importance of keeping users of Android’s headline devices happy.
For the most part, this will likely be well received. Samsung Music just wasn’t all that great, although it’s still available from the Play store. And while Google Play Music isn’t perfect – not by any stretch of the imagination – it’s certainly a sizable step up.
* It’s worth pointing out that Samsung doesn’t actually employ toddlers in its factories, design departments, or otherwise. I was making a shit joke. Don’t sue me.