The vast majority of the world’s non-Pixel Android smartphones nowadays come with a number of pre-installed pps most users aren’t exactly overjoyed to see occupy their already limited and precious storage space.
The “bloatware” problem, generally caused by a handset’s manufacturer or mobile network operator, can get truly infuriating when you’re not only shoved content you don’t need down your throat, but also prohibited from uninstalling said bloat.
It’s unclear if that’s going to be the case for Yahoo Sports, Newsroom, Yahoo Finance and Go90 services Samsung is preparing to push on your Galaxy S9 and S9+ Bixby Home under the terms of a new agreement with Oath. But odds are the chaebol’s fans will be furious either way.
Oath, of course, is a 2017-founded Verizon subsidiary serving as the umbrella company of Big Red’s 2015 and 2017-acquired digital content subdivisions. We’re talking AOL and Yahoo, which Verizon is trying to revive in the most aggressive way possible.
Oath has become Samsung’s “premiere content partner” for Galaxy phones locked to America’s largest wireless network. The four aforementioned apps, as well as possibly others in the future, will be pre-loaded on Galaxy S9 and S9+ units sold across the country, even eyeing an expansion to “global markets later this year.”
Of course, Go90 is a US-exclusive video streaming platform, but don’t act surprised if you buy a GS9 a few months down the line in, say, Italy to find real-time Yahoo Finance stock quotes and investment analysis or Yahoo Sports information delivered to your device out the box.
Worse yet, Oath plans to also serve “engaging” native ads within Galaxy apps and Game Launcher experiences, which Samsung will apparently allow in exchange for a cut of the revenue. That sounds both annoying and intrusive, even though the companies are trying hard to sell their collaboration as benefiting the “user experience” by “bringing together the best devices, premium content and advertising, and wireless network to consumers around the world.”
Update: An earlier version of this article stated Oath-owned apps will be pre-installed on all US Galaxy S9 variants. That is only true for Verizon-sold devices, as clarified by a company spokesperson.