Google to acquire Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion

Looks like Google is serious about this whole Android thing. The search giant has coughed up $12.5 billion to purchase Motorola Mobility. Whoa.

As Google's blog post on the subject points out, Motorola was a founding member of the Open Handset Alliance, an industry group dedicated to developing Android as an open platform for mobile devices. After acquiring one of its biggest handset partners, Google remains committed to keeping Android open. Motorola will be run as a separate company, and it will license Android just like everyone else.

Picking up Motorola expands Google's patent portfolio, which the company says will allow it to better defend Android from "anti-competitive patent attacks." Google's other Android partners sounds like they're in favor of the move—at least officially. Engadget has comments from the heads of HTC, LG, and Sony Ericsson that all praise Google for stepping up to defend Android and its partners. I wonder what they really think.

Interestingly, Google mentions in its blog post that Motorola is a "market leader in home devices and video solutions." This acquisition may have implications that go beyond the realm of smartphones and tablets.

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