Google currently has a pending acquisition of Motorola Mobility in the making, still waiting on some final regulatory go-aheads to complete. Even though Google will have its own operating system and easy access to hardware production, Chief Executive Officer Larry Page is adamant that Android will remain just as open to all manufacturers as it does today.
In an open letter published on the company’s website, Google’s co-founder said he expects to build ‘great devices’ based on the Android platform, coupled with the hardware technology of Motorola Mobility, which they are soon to acquire. He went on to stress that the ever-growing Android platform will remain just as open to other manufacturers as it does today. So the acquisition of Motorola Mobility will not cause Google to raise the Android drawbridge.
Within the letter, Mr Page explained that “it’s important to reiterate that openness and investment by many hardware partners have contributed to Android’s success”, he went on to say “So we look forward to working with all of them in the future to deliver outstanding user experiences”, further adding “Android was built as an open ecosystem and we have no plans to change that”.
Some analysts have speculated that Google’s acquisition of Motorola could shake up the relationships with other manufacturers, especially if Google launches its own line of devices into the market (more so than they are already). Susquehanna analyst Herman Leung said that the letter from Page underlines Google’s interest in approaching the hardware and smartphone device market.
Earlier this year Google stressed that the acquisition of Motorola Mobility is to boost their patent portfolio to better protect the Android Ecosystem. Apple, who seem to be patent-mad, have gone all out over the last year, opening legal action against companies that they perceive to infringe on their designs. Though patent-wars and more court cases are the last things that both the corporations and the public should want, it makes sense that, if Apple was to press legal action against some of Google’s designs, Google would want ammunition to retaliate with.
The original open letter from Larry Page to Google Investors can be read here.
I severely doubt that Google would ever close the Android doors to other manufacturers, because it benefits them hugely to have their operating system on so many devices.
What are your thoughts on the acquisition? Is Google on its way to build its own devices or is it just building up a patent arsenal?