We knew that mobile was going to be huge. We knew that Android was very important to Google. We knew that Google would make some sort of move into mobile sooner or later. But we didn’t expect this move: Google is buying Motorola.
Google is paying $12.5 billion (in cash!) for the handset maker. Google Phones will be rolling out of the Motorola factory pretty soon.
In a blogpost Larry Page explains the move. He talks about Motorola but he also points out the acquisition can be seen in the light of competing with Apple and Microsoft. He points out that the acquisition will help out Google in the patent-battle they are involved in at the moment:
“Our acquisition of Motorola will increase competition by strengthening Google’s patent portfolio, which will enable us to better protect Android from anti-competitive threats from Microsoft, Apple and other companies.”
The consequences of this acquisition will be huge. Google now not just delivers the platform, it will now also be able to deliver the hardware and the support that goes with that. It will mean that Google will be a lot bigger competitor to Apple and that it is aiming for dominance on the mobile front.
Android will remain open source
Andy Rubin, Senior Vice President of Mobile at Google, points out that Android will remain open source. In the press release he states:
“We expect that this combination will enable us to break new ground for the Android ecosystem. However, our vision for Android is unchanged and Google remains firmly committed to Android as an open platform and a vibrant open source community. We will continue to work with all of our valued Android partners to develop and distribute innovative Android-powered devices.”
Larry Page adds to that:
“This acquisition will not change our commitment to run Android as an open platform. Motorola will remain a licensee of Android and Android will remain open. We will run Motorola as a separate business. Many hardware partners have contributed to Android’s success and we look forward to continuing to work with all of them to deliver outstanding user experiences.”
The real implications we’ll see soon enough, but we know for sure that Google is taking a huge step in mobile. Especially looking at the news that Android is beating iOS in ad impressions and device market share. Google has gone from wanting to organize the world’s information to organizing the world period.
Update: This blogger apparently had a vision or knew something we didn’t. He explains well how the Motorola acquisition has much to do with the patent issues Google is having.