Since everything posted is speculation, what if Google didn't buy Motorola Mobility primarily for the handset market. Let's say they bought them for the set top box market. Google recently acquired SageTV and the Motorola products mesh perfectly between them.
I'm not saying that this is necessarily the case, but if it was then alot of the competition will be running to catch up (with their pants around their ankles) while they've been distracted by the smartphone talk.
You are right, Infect almost all big companies one day face that situation on their climax and need to diversify (internally or by acquisition) intelligently before too late (usually is!). If you r referring to my first sentence, i explained the state of happening, not good/evil. Google is as evil as any other giant and will do anything to keep them giant/become even bigger giant:)
If you are right, and I hope you are not then Google will have removed their competitive advantage. It is a seriously flawed assumption that you can get market share much above 90% in any market without acquisitions. Beyond 95% you become so out of touch with your user base that any upstart will nibble at your heels. Basically what I'm saying is that Google can't grow dollars in a market where they have 90% penetration so they need to look at others. If they try to pass the 90% barrier they will undermine themselves and become a victim of their success. Look a MS, they held 95% for a while and for the last 10 years have gone into the business of alienating their user base. It's inevitable unless you tap a different market. Maybe this is what Google is doing, anything else is suicide.
Google is continuously getting more and more alone and enemy to partners in pursuit of expanding its empire. Indeed from business stand point they need such thing to counter Apple. But Android community will be severely disturbed (esp. small players). Microsoft has a new opportunity door opened, but they also have close tie-up now with Nokia. It will be interesting to see how Samsung will respond to new threats. Following Apple, It seems each giant now wants to own Software+Hardware in different scenarios :)
If Google's smart, and I have no doubt they are, they will run Motorola as an independent business unit. I've worked in the automotive industry for a while, and one of GM's owned parts manufacturers (several actually) was successfully selling parts to Toyota, Bosch, Nissan, Ford and others, and no one could question how competitive the automotive market was in the 90's. I trust Google to do that well. I don't trust exclusionists like Apple and Microsoft to do that, because they have a business model that is based on first rate legal protection of second rate ideas. I won't elaborate here, but there are countless examples of serious flaws in Apple and MS products that don't get addressed because they have the market power. Think about it, IE was made free to put Netscape out of business. The list goes on.
I am not sure Google need to go head to head with Apple although it's another possible explanation of their decision to acquire Motorola Mobility. I do not think Google shareholders would be very happy with such change of focus. Apple has been there and done it, it's their bread and butter. Google would be going into a new territory. Moreover, why would Google go head to head with Apple while they can leverage the combined power of many companies (Samsung, HTC etc.) to do so?? Neah, it does not make sense to me.... The patent issue is the most convincing reason, not that it is a wise course of action anyway. Poor decision IMHO.
I totally agree with you, Frank.
And yet, that is going to upset every dick and harry in the Android-based handset/tablet business -- for sure.
Those who jumped on the Android bandwagon early on will feel as though they are now destined to play the second fiddle to Motorola Mobility.
You may say that it's a business decision. True. But if Google gets into its own hardware business, Google is in a sense screwing everyone. Google knows that it won't sit well with its own "do-no-evil" company motto.
If Google were to choose to "build its own mobile empire" and got head-to-head with everyone, why is that not the right thing to do?
If it maximizes revenue and profit growth for Google in the long term, a shareholder would say it is precisely the right thing to do.