European Commission Google’s Take Over of Motorola

Posted by at 12:27 pm on February 13, 2012

As anticipated, the European Commission on Monday approved Google’s $12.5 billion buyout of Motorola. The approval was without conditions after the EU body decided that it wouldn’t hurt smartphone competition or patent issues. Commissioner Joaquin Almunia was aware there was a chance Google might abuse patents to shelter Android, but he promised legal action if that was the case.

The search giant had promised it would fairly license patents to others, although the Commission has said this wasn’t a crucial factor. Questions have been raised over the sincerity of the claim given that Google would perpetuate Motorola’s attempt at getting 2.25 percent of a total iOS device price as a royalty, a rate which many consider abuse of standards-based patents.

Google can’t formally close the deal until Chinese, Israel, Taiwanese, and US officials approve the takeover. Leaks from inside the US Department of Justice have suggested an American approval is likely.

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