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Aug 15, 2011

Google-Motorola: The ironic side of it

Google-Motorola

So. A nice maneuver by Google, isn't it? Buying one of the companies who helped bringing Android to the top (remember the first Droooooooid? The first Android MVP).

Brilliant move? Or is it the beginning of the end?

Well, it depends who you ask, or when you ask it, but me? I'm neutral. I just spent some time reading the different articles and opinions over the web, and it's hard to get answers: is it a good move or a bad one? Ho many patents Motorola really has: 15,000? 17,000? 25,000? the number is climbing up all the time!

As I said: a classic.

Here are some pros and cons that I've picked today form the world wide web (I love this name!):

Cons:

  1. Conflict with Google's Android partners (Samsung, HTC, LG, Kakawasakasa [just kidding about the last one, there is no such partner… although there could be…]) which are now "second best" in the Android lineup. In fact – they are now competing with Google in the Android realm. Risky, isn't it?
  2. Patents war again: the step seems like a defensive move rather than being an offensive one – Google is trying to defend Android patents but as Motorola is already being sued by Microsoft and Apple – not sure this move will work out eventually… some think the patents Motorola has do not provide the kind of protection Google is looking for.
  3. Swallowing such a big company seems like a hard move even for giant Google. Motorola is 60% the size of Google! That's one hell of a frog to swallow, and may change the company's culture completely. In addition, Google will have to cope with hardware now, something they didn't do well in the past (remember Nexus One?): cope with production of hardware, take losses when a phone dies, manage sales differently – it's hard.
  4. Money. Motorola did not perform well since the beginning of 2011 comparing to other Android vendors. If it starts to gain market share – then the conflict with HTC and Samsung will become worse, if it fails – then everyone will look at Google as if it made a terrible mistake. Either ways, it will take time.
  5. Apple wannabe's (Not!). “No one has ever had success licensing [an operating system] and competing with their licensees,” (Gartner analyst Michael Gartenberg ). Apple tried that once and totally failed…

Google buys Motorola

Pros:

  1. No conflict with Google's Android partners: No Android partner will ever leave this goldmine! After all, what else can they build? Windows Phone? that's all Nokia now, and even if it wasn't, no one really buys WP7 phones these days, it's just a fiction. Forget it.
  2. Patents war again: Motorola claims infringement of 16 of its patents by Microsoft’s PC and server software, Windows Mobile and Xbox products. Now those patents belong to Google. ha ha ha (evil laughter). They are finally ready for war.
  3. Swallowing such a big company – might be hard, but Google can always get rid of the hardware part and stick with the patents list in case things will not work out…In the recent patents war this seems to be the only way to start defending Android. It is also a statement: "I'm here to defend my crown"
  4. Money: Everyone seems to be making a fortune out of Android. Everyone besides Google – so now they can start selling Android handsets and make a fortune like Apple does
  5. Apple wannabe's (Not!). it worked well for Apple: creating both mobile operating system with the hardware seems to make better products, so why not?

As you can see, a lot of different opinions, no one really knows how things will escalate in the near future.

Will be interesting…

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