Most people who follow the happenings in the technology world have had time to digest the news of Google’s 12.5 billion dollar acquisition of Motorola Mobility. The reaction, as you would expect, has ranged from joyous optimism for some, to leaving others looking for a short bit of rope and a rafter. While I claim to be pro Android (inherent in being pro competition), I don’t subscribe to the arguement of this sale harming the Android operating system in any way. Android manual-thumping purists lost that arguement at the point in time the first key stroke to customize Android 1.0 was struck. This purchase will only clearly define distribution of the pure “Google Experience” phones and the others that choose customization, ala TouchWiz by Samsung or Sense by HTC, for examples.
I’d love to give you the answer in big, bold neon lights, but we’ll not know for some time to come what the flies on the walls in Libertyville and Mountain View have seen in the not so distant past. This is where I go out on a limb and say it has nothing to do with patents, lawsuits, or Apple and say it comes down to what it’s always been about, making money. Licenses can be bought. How many places can you put a Home button on a touchscreen smartphone? And Apple isn’t coming at Google with velociraptors wearing jet packs and holding scissors (although VJS devices are rumored to exist in Cupertino).
Fringe benefits abound for Google, after shelling out the funds for Motorola’s mobile division. Enough so, that the Google legal team high-fived it all the way to their offices to call their respective families and tell them that they would be allowed home for the Holidays. This purchase is about infrastructure. Google wants to preserve and purvey “Google Experience” devices and Motorola Mobility has the infrastructure to do just that, quickly.
I’ve personally witnessed a investment group purchase a nationwide set of properties for 3.24 billion dollars, only to turn around and run the properties into the ground, while sucking every dollar out of them. The real goal was a company intranet system that was used for the other 100 billion plus in assets in their portfolio. I’m not saying that Google will take what they need and cast Motorola Mobility aside. I merely offer evidence of what companies will do to attain infrastructure that is ultimately costly and time expansive to develop and streamline. While Motorola has had to mount a fight to go through it’s own retooling to become a solvent player in the mobile tech arena again, they’ve maintained the capability to produce, market, and deliver products to points of sale in the global market space. Google has struggled to even bring sales to the virtual space.
Like I said before, time has a way of shedding light on secrets and intentions. However, Google will, within a short time frame, have the ability to bring multiple “Google Experience” devices to all major markets, with the added benefits of preserving the Android platform and staving off any patent legal issues (for the time being). Investing in your companies future by increasing revenue streams while preserving and protecting your company integrity is not a bad day at the office. In the long run, it truly does make perfect sense.
John Ashton Edgar is Executive Editor at ClassicBuzz.com. You can find him on twitter: @JohnAshtonEdgar