According to plans confirmed by sources of The Information, Google is apparently replacing its Nexus brand with 'Android Silver'. This program will see the company spending heavily on incentives for OEMs and carriers to produce high-end devices which will closely adhere to Google's specs.
This initiative shows that Google is working on something that will help it re-gain control over the Android ecosystem. The company is likely to offer promotions through ad campaigns and in-store displays to showcase the merits of Android Silver devices. Such Silver devices are to have a rather limited number of pre-installed non-Google apps, or will allow end-users to uninstall non-standard Android apps at the very least.
Silver devices, similar to Nexus hardware, will also get more improved, more secure Android software updates quicker, all contributing towards bringing in real standards and consistency to the ecosystem. Mandatory 'Powered by Android' logos on boot screens and a folder of Google-created apps are also likely to be reinforced through the program.
According to the report Google are looking to invest $1 billion to entice phone makers to join its new initiative. LG and Motorola are flagged as the most probable OEMs to take part in the program from its outset. However, Samsung, HTC and Sony still need some convincing since these companies have all invested in developing their own differentiating look for Android.
Overall, we are not expecting Silver to be implemented just yet, as rumours of Google's next Nexus device are still a hot topic. But we are sure of one thing, and it is that Google is definitely re-asserting itself as the company behind Android phones and will be taking back some of the influence Samsung has been getting over Android as it dominates global market share. Also a wider Android Silver adoption, following any success at the higher end of things, can only be a good thing for the Android fragmentation and out-of-date OS problems.