Google officially owns Motorola: What happens now?

Google Motorola Purchase (image by Smartphone Envy)After nine months of regulatory gestation, Google’s huge 12.5 billion dollar purchase of Motorola Mobility is now a done deal. Back in February, the deal was approved by the United States and earlier this week, China finally approved the deal as well. In a blog post today, Google CEO Larry Page announced that everything is official and the purchase is complete. Google is now a phone, tablet, and set-top box manufacturer. 

“… I’m excited to announce today that our Motorola Mobility deal has closed,” wrote Page. “Motorola is a great American tech company that has driven the mobile revolution, with a track record of over 80 years of innovation, including the creation of the first cell phone. We all remember Motorola’s StarTAC, which at the time seemed tiny and showed the real potential of these devices. And as a company who made a big, early bet on Android, Motorola has become an incredibly valuable partner to Google.”

What happens now?

New CEO: Things aren’t staying the same at Motorola. Though Page has said that Google intends to run Motorola as a “separate business,” CEO Sanjay Jha has already stepped down and been replaced with “longtime Googler” Dennis Woodside, who has run Google’s business operations in the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe, Russia, and the Americas. Woodside will be installing other executives as well, and likely make significant changes (possibly layoffs) to Motorola’s business in order to bring it to profitability.

Google Play store: We imagine that Google will begin selling Motorola devices through its Google Play store.

No more NinjaBlur: Motorola’s custom user interface for Android is called NinjaBlur, and used to be called MotoBlur. It sucks. We hope that the new Motorola ditches this and concentrates on vanilla versions of Android.

Updates: Faster software upgrades would also be nice. Currently, Motorola is one of the slowest manufacturers to adopt Android 4.0 (ICS).

Better cross-carrier support: Currently, Motorola has a number of AT&T and Verizon handsets, but it’s mostly absent from Sprint and T-Mobile. It would be great to see it regain momentum on all carriers.

Less devices, but better: This quote comes from the press release: “Our aim is simple: to focus Motorola Mobility’s remarkable talent on fewer, bigger bets, and create wonderful devices that are used by people around the world.” It looks like Google hopes to somewhat recreate the success of Apple and Samsung’s Galaxy series by creating fewer handsets, but drawing more attention to them.

These are all relatively positive outcomes from the purchase of Motorola. Things could also go horribly wrong in many ways. Motorola is involved in a lot of patent litigation, and is facing possible product bans in the United States due to its conflict with Microsoft. There’s always a chance that Motorola might be more trouble than it’s worth.

(Image via)

Update 5/22/2012: Added section “Less devices, but better” after reading official Google press release. 


Google’s Stadia is the future of gaming, and that’s bad news for our planet

Google’s upcoming Stadia cloud gaming service, and its competitors, are ready to change the way gamers play, but in doing so they may kick off a new wave of data center growth – with unfortunate consequences for the environment.

Bothering the bots: Funny questions and commands to pose to Google Assistant

Communicating with Google Assistant can be a chore. Luckily, there are plenty of fun questions and commands to add a little entertainment to your oft-rigid conversation. Here are some of our favorites.

Tired of choosing between Windows and Mac? Check out these Chromebooks instead

We've compiled a list of the best Chromebooks -- laptops that combine great battery life, comfortable keyboards, and the performance it takes to run Google's lightweight Chrome OS. From Samsung to Acer, these are the Chromebooks that really…

Google Maps now shows EV owners which charging stations are occupied

Google has just beefed up its Maps app with extra data to help EV owners find the nearest charging station. Drivers can also find out about the number and types of ports available, and whether they're occupied.

Want to watch Netflix in bed or browse the web? We have a tablet for everyone

There’s so much choice when shopping for a new tablet that it can be hard to pick the right one. From iPads to Android, these are our picks for the best tablets you can buy right now whatever your budget.

On a budget? We found the best affordable smartphones you can buy

Here are the best affordable phones for anyone working with a tight budget, whether you're a fan of stock Android or marathon battery life. Find out what you can get for under $500 or far, far less as we round up the best budget…

Step into Childish Gambino’s musical universe with the Pharos AR app

Childish Gambino seems to be on a mission to take over everyone's smartphones. Now you can experience his musical and visual universe through his new Pharos AR app, available on Android now and iOS soon.

Which smartphone has the best camera? We found the sharpest shooters

They say that the best camera is always the one you have with you and that makes your smartphone camera very important indeed. Join us for a closer look at the best camera phones available right now.

We tried all the latest and greatest smartphones to find the best of 2019

Smartphones are perhaps the most important and personal piece of tech on the planet. That’s why it’s important to pick the best phone for your individual needs. Here are the best smartphones you can buy.

Solve a galaxy of problems with a simple reset of your S10

If your Samsung smartphone is acting up, then you may want to try resetting it. We'll show you how to overcome simple issues with a soft reset and also how to tackle bigger problems or prep it for sale with a factory reset.

iFixit's teardown might show the reason the Galaxy Fold keeps breaking

The Samsung Galaxy Fold has arrived, and it goes on sale soon. Folding out from a 4.6-inch display to a tablet-sized 7.3-inch display, this unique device has six cameras, two batteries, and special software to help you use multiple apps.

Need a minute to yourself? Buy some alone time with the best tablets for kids

Looking to keep those tiny fingers and brains busy? Tablets aren’t just for grown-ups, and many are kid-friendly! Here's our list of the best tablets for kids, with parental controls and plenty of tempting features to satisfy your…

Bigger isn’t always better: 5 of the smallest smartphones worth buying

Phones are getting larger and larger, but what options exist for the small-of-hand, or people who just want a phone they can use one-handed? In a world of phablets, some of the smallest smartphones can still pack a punch.

Waze vs. Google Maps: Which map app should you be using?

Waze and Google Maps are two of the most popular apps for those looking for turn-by-turn navigation, yet there are some notable differences to point out. Here, we examine both to decide which offers the best feature set.