On Sunday night, the New York Times published an article about Google's plans to search with artificial intelligence. It included a report that Samsung was reportedly considering using the Bing search engine Microsoft's default instead of Google Search on future Galaxy smartphones and other Android devices. This story had an immediate effect on Google's stock price on Monday, as it fell by 2,5%.
However, Andreas Proschofsky, a reporter for Austria's derStandard website, said on Twitter on Monday that it might not be possible for Samsung to ditch Google Search for Microsoft Bing, at least in some markets like the US.
He points out that any company that wants to build an Android-based phone with Google services will have to comply with the Mobile Application Distribution Agreement (MADA). It states that manufacturers who want to have the Google Play Store installed on their devices should also have Google Search as their default search engine.
Android OEMs have to sign a thing called "Mobile Application Distribution Agreement" (MADA) if they want to get a license to use the Play Store and other Google apps. This includes a bunch of rules which include – in most countries – setting Google Search as default.
— Andreas Proschofsky (@suka_hiroaki) April 17, 2023
Some markets like Europe and India are a little different. Proschofsky mentioned that these Android phones have a search engine selection screen required by some regulatory agencies. However, companies can't really get rid of Google Search entirely.
So Samsung would have to ditch Google services entirely on its future Android phones to get Bing as the default search, which seems highly unlikely. Or the New York Times publication is wrong.
Proschofsky mentioned that there are other avenues that "Samsung could put pressure on Google," but it appears that the threat of switching search engines is not one of them.