It's obviously going to tale a while to sort out the implications of Googlr's just-announced $12.5 billion bid for Motorola Mobility, the cell phone side of Motorola. Here's an excerpt pof Larry Page's blog post -- emphasis on intellectual property:
We recently explained how companies including Microsoft and Apple are banding together in anti-competitive patent attacks on Android. The U.S. Department of Justice had to intervene in the results of one recent patent auction to “protect competition and innovation in the open source software community” and it is currently looking into the results of the Nortel auction. Our acquisition of Motorola will increase competition by strengthening Google’s patent portfolio, which will enable us to better protect Android from anti-competitive threats from Microsoft, Apple and other companies.
The combination of Google and Motorola will not only supercharge Android, but will also enhance competition and offer consumers accelerating innovation, greater choice, and wonderful user experiences. I am confident that these great experiences will create huge value for shareholders.
I look forward to welcoming Motorolans to our family of Googlers.
-Google Blog, August 15, 2011
I like the move. Instead of spending $5 billion or more for a simple patent portfolio, get Motorola's top-notch portfolio plus a phone business. Perhaps the most important aspect or feature of Android that lags behind the iPhone is the smoothness of the hardware -- scrolling, pinching, selecting with a finger. So maybe getting one hardware vendor to "fix" that piece supercharges the whole ecosystem if it raises the bar on hardware.