Report: the Google – Motorola merger has made Android manufacturers unhappy

April 9, 2012
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Google Motorola merger
In case you can’t remember, before any authority gave its go-ahead on the Google-Motorola merger, Mountain View’s officials were suspiciously quick to step up and announce that Google will treat Motorola much like a separate entity. At the time of the aforementioned announcement, many people believed that Google is honestly engaged in respecting that commitment, but there were also voices that pointed out that this is exactly the announcement Google had to make in order to ensure a worldwide approval of the merger.

As it stands, Google’s acquisition of Motorola is pretty much a done deal, despite the fact that China’s approval is still pending. So who’s to say Google won’t start favorizing their in-house manufacturer as soon as the next quarter? Apparently, nobody, as an industry insider recently told Business Insider that several Android manufacturers felt insulted by Google’s decision to buy their own manufacturer. As it turns out, some companies believe that they will soon start being treated as second rate customers.

The unnamed insider went on to confirm previous rumors on the subject by claiming that an increasing number of manufacturers plan to start releasing devices running forked (modified) versions of Android as soon as the end of this year. But as it turns out, manufacturers are so sick of being unable to distinguish themselves in the Android manufacturer jungle that they are also planning on developing their own operating systems.

Forked versions of Android are reportedly considered as a solution only until the manufacturers in question are able to come up with a mobile OS of their own. Apparently, these manufactures felt highly encouraged by the commercial success of Amazon’s Kindle Fire, as well as that of Barnes & Noble’s Nook tablets.

While the names of the unsatisfied manufacturers are unknown, it is unlikely that successful manufacturers such as HTC, Samsung, or ASUS would have any reason to turn their backs on Android. But it should be noted that Business Insider’s source did mention that a big device maker has already completed work on a forked version of Android. I’m no prophet, but Dell and LG are a couple of names I’m willing to wager some spare change on.

According to the source, the first Google Experience tablet will still be built by ASUS (as previously rumored), but its follow-up will be built by Motorola. Just so it’s noted, even if Google doesn’t start giving special privileges to Motorola, Big M is likely to be one of the Nexus device manufacturers in the future. HTC and Samsung also manufactured Nexus devices in the past, so why wouldn’t Motorola get that chance?

If you thought the Android ecosystem is fragmented at this point, I’m sure we’ll have to come up with a more powerful word to describe the situation if an increasing number of forked versions of Android will soon populate the consumer market. I’m sincerely hoping this won’t happen, but feel free to crush my optimism in the comment section below!

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