Motorola Mobility Googled
Global - In what marks a major shift in strategy for the Internet search giant, Google has announced it is acquiring android partner Motorola for US$12.5 billion.
The deal enables Google to supercharge the Android ecosystem and will enhance competition in mobile computing.
Larry Page, CEO of Google, said: "Motorola Mobility's total commitment to Android has created a natural fit for our two companies."
"Together, we will create amazing user experiences that supercharge the entire Android ecosystem for the benefit of consumers, partners and developers. I look forward to welcoming Motorolans to our family of Googlers."
Motorola Mobility will remain a licensee of Android and Android will remain open. Google will run Motorola Mobility as a separate business.
"This transaction offers significant value for Motorola Mobility's stockholders and provides compelling new opportunities for our employees, customers, and partners around the world," Sanjay Jha (pictured), CEO of Motorola Mobility, said.
Google has had a track record of successful acquisitions, however, unlike the past, this time the entity is a much more established brand. It also marks Google's first big ticket investment in hardware, not software.
Other purchases made by Google in the past include among others, DoubleClick, the display-ad provider which it bought for US$3.11 billion in 2007, YouTube LLC, which it acquired for US$1.56 billion in 2006 and AdMob Inc. for which it paid US$681 million in 2010.
The deal has also given way to speculation that Google's move could be seen as playing favourites amongst its other Android partners and gives competitors such as Microsoft an opening.
However, Google made it clear that its vision for Android is unchanged and that it remains firmly committed to Android as an open platform and a vibrant open source community.
Andy Rubin, Senior vice president of Mobile at Google said it will continue to work with all of its valued Android partners to develop and distribute innovative Android-powered devices.
The deal is expected to close by the end of 2011 or early 2012, and is subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of regulatory approvals in the US, the European Union and other jurisdictions, and the approval of Motorola Mobility's stockholders.
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