With Google beating Oracle in their recent case, many analysts have been thinking that Google may take Android from being open sourced to being proprietary. Open source is what made Android as popular as it is today, however there are a number of reasons why open source is causing issues for both Google and the Android platform. The first major one is updates. Android 6.0 Marshmallow is barely at 10% right now, some 8 months after it officially launched. Then there's also the bloatware and third-party skins that OEMs as well as carriers, install on their smartphones. This actually causes these updates to be pretty slow, and some don't get updated at all.
In the early days of Android, Google needed help from partners like HTC, LG, Samsung and Motorola. All of which were early adopters of Android and helped turn Android into the operating system it is today. However, now Google is seeing these partners as weighing down Android. Not only due to slow updates and their skins or overlays, but their pricing. We've seen a number of smartphones come out of China with the same specs as those launched in North America and even Europe, but they are often times around half the price. Prices of these smartphones are slowing down adoption of Android, as well as upgrades for existing users. Which also means that more users are using outdated smartphones, and that circles back to updates being an issue for Android.
An analyst at Nomura Securities, Richard Windsor, believes that Google's plan to make Android proprietary has already begun, and that we may see it in the next couple of years. Of course, a move as big as this one is definitely going to be a bit slow to take place. By making it proprietary, Google would ship the binaries to OEMs, and then work closely with Qualcomm and MediaTek to make sure the software works well with their processors. Windsor believes that the future of Android doesn't include the big-brand smartphone makers. Now whether this is true or not is another story. But making Android proprietary is definitely something that would help get updates out sooner, which is a big issue with Android. Especially with the number of vulnerabilities popping up recently. Many smartphones are months and months behind on security updates, if they have gotten any at all.
Currently, this is all just rumor, so we'll take this with a grain of salt for now. But it wouldn't be surprising to see this happen in the next few years.