Motorola's India biz fits well with Google

The company has about 1,500 employees in India spread across three centres in Bangalore, Pune and Hyderabad, mainly doing research and development (R&D) work for the mobility devices -- both hardware and software.  

Motorola Mobility fuses innovative technology with human insights to create simplified users experiences in communications. Its portfolio includes converged mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets; wireless accessories; end-to-end video and data delivery; and management solutions, including set-tops and data-access devices.

But the engineers at Motorola’s R&D centres in India work mostly on the Android operating system (OS), the open source mobile OS being driven by Google, that runs millions of smart phones and hundreds of tablets. Interestingly, Google’s R&D centres in India also does R&D work on Android and are likely to be merged with Motorola’s R&D operations here.

Patent focus

“I think Motorola employees will be an asset to Google as India centres contribute a great deal in Android technology,” said a senior Motorola executive who recently moved out of the company.  

One of the major reasons why Google took over Motorola is that it wants to protect Android from all types of patent related legal issues and also create a technology ecosystem to make it invincible.

In a conference call with the analysts on Monday evening, Deccan Herald has a transcript of the call, Google Inc CEO Lary Page made it amply clear that Motorola’s strong patent portfolio will help protect Android from anti-competitive threats from Microsoft, Apple and other companies.

According to Motorola Mobility Chairman & CEO Sanjay Jha, who also took part in the call, Motorola has over 17,000 issued patents worldwide and over 7,500 patent applications in process. “And as a result of the combination of these patents we believe we'll be able to provide much better support to the Android ecosystem.”

Android OS which, according to Gartner, now runs for 43 per cent of global smartphones, has grown tremendously since its launch in November of 2007.

More than 150 million Android devices have been activated worldwide through a network of 39 manufacturers, 231 carriers in 123 countries. “And there's more than 550,000 Android devices are lit up every day, that's just amazing progress,” said Page.

Page also informed analysts that Google will continue to work with all hardware partners who have contributed to Android's success. “We built Android as an open-source platform and it will stay that way”, he said.

Google plan is that Motorola will remain a licensee of Android and Google to work closely with the Motorola teams and let Sanjay Jha and his management team drive the business.

“That way we can supercharge both the Android ecosystem as well as the Motorola business,” Page said. Some analysts, however, believe that though Google did not talk about its own handset strategy, it is likely to pursue the same to aggressively compete with other Android mobile manufacturers like Samsung and HTC.

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