Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Google buys Motorola Mobile

Lawyers all over the United States woke up happy this morning on hearing the news that Google has splashed out cash, to the tune of $12.5 billion to acquire Motorola Mobile and its portfolio of around 25,000 patents.

Googorola? Motorogle?

I like Googorola personally. It sounds like something that would go on a rampage and flatten Tokyo for our matinee entertainment.

I’m guessing that Google plans to unleash their mutant matinee monster in Redmond and Cupertino hoping for a Godzilla meets Tokyo like result and with such a large patent portfolio you’ve got to start wondering how long it’ll be before their army of lawyers will end up rolling into action like London teens looking for a night of looting and pillaging.

The really interesting story here is the effect on LG, Samsung and, especially, HTC.

HTC is now between the devil and the deep blue sea. On one side their wildly successful Android based business and on the other their not so much Windows MoPho based products.

The good news for them (!?), now, is that they’re going to be competing directly against their key suppliers. Microsoft and Nokia, who have recently announced that they’re going to drop prices to buy marketshare in the US for the good of Finland, Redmond and the WinMoPho way. Googorola who have now got a hardware/software end to end experience and they control Android too. Unless it now somehow forks.

Publicly HTC, Samsung and LG aren’t going to be too vocal about this. They won’t want to piss off the Gnomes of Mountain View, but you’ve got to wonder about the long term effects on their businesses.

If the Gnomes really wanted to go for a scorched earth policy they should have bought Nokia, I mean with their share price it wouldn’t cost a whole lot, and then move the whole company to Android and leave Ballmer standing with his WinMoPho in his hand.

As for Samsung, between their problems with Apple and now facing down Googorola, Tokyo’s not all that far from Seoul after all, they’ve got some real problems especially since they’re only just starting to make serious inroads into the market place with the Galaxy S II.

LG look like they’re going to be the big losers in this one because they don’t really have major market penetration outside Korea.

I’ll talk a bit more about this over the next couple of weeks because this is a landscape mover.

I wonder if any IP Law Firms have floated? That’s where I’d be putting my money.

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