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Google closes Motorola Mobility acquisition

Warwick Ashford

Google has announced the completion of the acquisition of Motorola Mobility.

Earlier this week, regulatory authorities in China gave their approval to Google's acquisition of Motorola Mobility

The final approval of Google's biggest acquisition to date comes just over three months after the deal was approved by regulators in the US and Europe.

Google chief executive Larry Page confirmed in a blog post that the $12.5bn deal had closed.

"As a company who made a big, early bet on Android, Motorola has become an incredibly valuable partner to Google," Page wrote.

Google has also announced that Motorola Mobility chief executive Sanjay Jha is to stand down in favour of Google's Dennis Woodside, according to the Telegraph.

Woodside developed Google's businesses in the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe and Russia. He is credited with boosting Google's revenue in the US from $10.8bn to $17.5bn in under three years as president of the Americas region, the paper said.

In his blog post, Page emphasised the future impact of mobile technology. "Many users coming online today may never use a desktop machine, and the impact of that transition will be profound - as will the ability to just tap and pay with your phone," he wrote.  

The acquisition will give Google access to more than 17,000 patents held by Motorola Mobility, which analysts say enable Google to provide patent protection to device makers using its Android mobile operating system.

The acquisition will also enable Google to start manufacturing phones and tablet computers.

As part of the approval, Google needs to ensure that Android software versions are free and open over the next five years, China’s Ministry of Commerce said in a statement on its website.

Google will report to an independent monitor in China on its efforts to comply with terms of the deal approval, according to the website.

But Chinese approval was made on the condition that Google keeps Android mobile operating system free for other device makers for up to five years.

When the deal was announced in August, Larry Page emphasised that Motorola Mobility would remain a licensee of Android, and Android will remain open, with Mobility run as a separate entity.

The European Commission (EC) raised concerns that Google might restrict the use of Android to Motorola, but later said the move was unlikely. 

However, the EC and US regulators said they would monitor Google’s and rivals’ use of patents.


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