Google’s Bid to Be Everything to Everyone – Businessweek
Rarely has any company put so much on the line as Google (GOOG) has with its purchase of struggling cell-phone maker Motorola Mobility (MMI). When the $12.5 billion deal was announced last August, analysts focused primarily on what Motorola’s more than 17,000 patents rather than its hardware expertise would do for Google, which was in the midst of an escalating legal skirmish with Apple (AAPL) and others over its Android smartphones.
Turns out Google has greater ambitions than just building out its patent portfolio. On Feb. 10, the Wall Street Journal broke the news that Google is working on an audio-streaming device for the living room. Since Motorola is already the market leader in cable set-top boxes, it’s likely such a device could also be used to distribute television, movies, and other digital fare. The San Jose Mercury News subsequently reported on $120 million in new architectural projects at the Googleplex in Mountain View, Calif., including advanced hardware-testing facilities.
Google Chief Executive Officer Larry Page is clearly looking beyond not just search—still the main cog in its profit-making machine—but software entirely. Here’s why: Apple’s $465 billion-odd market capitalization is currently greater than Microsoft MSFT, Google, and Nokia (NOK) combined, thanks to its ecosystem of tightly integrated hardware and software products. “The line between hardware and software is indistinct and arbitrary, especially in mobile devices,” says Paul Saffo, a consultant with Discern. “You need to control the hardware to control the overall experience.”
Strange Random Business Quote:
“A business exists to create a customer” Peter F. Drucker (American Educator and Writer, b.1909)
- Google investing $120 million on hardware testing facilities, ‘Google Experience Centre’ (theverge.com)
- Google has intriguing plans at the Googleplex (canada.com)
- U.S., EU OK Google’s $12.5B Motorola Mobility Bid (npr.org)
- Google says EU has approved Motorola bid (marketwatch.com)
- Google Wins E.U., U.S. Approval To Scoop Up Motorola, Patents (forbes.com)
- Google Experience Center hub of search firm’s hardware ambitions (slashgear.com)
Posted on February 17, 2012, in Article and tagged Android, Apple, Google, Googleplex, Microsoft, Motorola, Motorola Mobility, San Jose Mercury News, Wall Street Journal. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.