Verizon and Google have seemingly worked well together. Last year Verizon decided to lean heavily on Android handsets, starting with the Motorola Droid. Since then we’ve seen many other Android handsets from the nation’s No. 1 carrier, including the recently announced Samsung Fascinate. This good working relationship made a recent rumor seem a bit odd. As The Droid Guy reported on Wednesday, Verizon plans to make Bings its exclusive search engine on Android handsets. It seems odd, but Droid Guy has been working on this and he seems to have some evidence. But like many head scratchers, there is far more to this story.
Verizon has been making Bing the default search engine on its smartphones for quite some time now. It is part of the company’s partnership with Microsoft. It would certainly seem odd for them to place Bing as the default search on Android phones, since Google has its OS loaded up with ways to search the web via Google (e.g., voice search, home screen widget). Yet that’s what Verizon planned to do with the Fascinate. But, as a Verizon spokeswoman said, “Customers may change the search engine on their phones if they like.”
That sounds reasonable, but as Droid Guy found, there are certainly limitations when it comes to the Fascinate. As he said, there is no Google search widget in the menu, nor is there one available in the Market. Even APKs for the search bar widget haven’t worked. So, by that measure, it does appear that Verizon has crippled Google search on Android handsets — which seems inherently wrong.
It’s not all bad news, though. As AndroidGuys explain, the situation with the Fascinate will not necessarily be the same for future handsets, or will it affect older handsets. Also, as one commenter noted, there is a possibility that the Fascinate will have the Google search widget available in the market once it updates to 2.2. So this could all blow over with little incident. It’s just a shame that Verizon is pairing a Google operating system with a Microsoft search engine.
Verizon supposedly pulled the same thing with their BlackBerry devices, but in the same manner it wasn’t all of them. They announced it when I still had a Curve 8330 and I never was forced to use Bing over Google. Even when I got a Tour 9630 Google was still my default search. Storm users seem to be affected, though. This is good news for those waiting for newer Verizon Android devices, including an eventual LTE one. You might not have Bing shoved down your throat.
This post originated at AndGeeks.com - home to all things Android! Also a great source of info about Android Phones.
Why would Verizon replace Google search with Bing on Android?