China clears Google purchase of Motorola Mobility
Google on Saturday said that Chinese regulators approved its $12.5 billion deal to buy Motorola Mobility, clearing the path for the Internet titan to complete the acquisition early next week.
US and European regulators gave approval to the purchase in February.
Conditions put on the rubber stamp from China’s Ministry of Commerce included Google keeping its Android software for gadgets such as smartphones and tablet computers free and open for at least five years.
“Our stand since we agreed to acquire Motorola has not changed and we look forward to closing the deal,” a Google spokesperson told AFP.
Google will acquire 17,000 patents with the purchase of Motorola Mobility and has been strengthening its patent portfolio as the fight for dominance in the booming smartphone and tablet market increasingly involves lawsuits claiming infringement of patented technology.
Apple and South Korea’s Samsung, whose devices are powered by Google’s Android software, are currently involved in lengthy and costly patent fights being waged on several continents.
In announcing the Motorola Mobility acquisition in August, Google chief executive Larry Page said it will “enable us to better protect Android from anti-competitive threats from Microsoft, Apple and other companies.”
Regulators in the US and elsewhere have stressed that they will be watching to make sure that the Mountain View, California-based company does not use its acquisition of Motorola Mobility to obtain unfair advantage in the market.