In a blog post today, Google's SVP of Hardware Rich Osterloh announced that the company is making a major acquisition from HTC. However, unlike typical acquisitions, only a specific part of the company's workforce is changing hands in the deal. According to the New York Times (NYT), Google is picking up some two thousand of HTC's employees in exchange for $1.1 billion in cash. The deal also includes a non-exclusive licensing agreement for some of HTC's intellectual property.
The move is a huge expansion of Google's hardware division, and Osterloh described it as "a continuation of [Google's] big bet on hardware." Google said that most of the HTC employees encompassed by the deal were already working closely with the search giant on the Pixel smartphone.
According to the NYT report, HTC's Peter Shen said the smartphone manufacturer will still retain around half of its R&D staff after the deal. The company's had tough financial times lately, and it has made major cuts to marketing and research. The cash that HTC's getting from this deal might help level the ship out.
After listing off all of Google's current hardware—Google Home, Google Wifi, Daydream View, Chromecast Ultra, and of course the Pixel phone—Osterloh promised "a second generation of products" on October 4. You can rest assured we'll have full coverage of those announcements, so stay tuned.
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