Opinion: Google's patent play

The move to buy Motorola Mobility gives Google a major boost in its patent battles with Apple and Microsoft, writes Dr Srikumar Venugopal.

Google has surprised the entire tech industry by announcing it is acquiring Motorola Mobility, the maker of Droid smartphones and Xoom tablets, for US$12.5 billion in cash.

This move, the largest acquisition to date by Google, is significant for many reasons.

First, by spending a significant portion of its US$39 billion war-chest, Google has sent an unambiguous signal about the importance it places on mobile devices.

Google, it would seem, has every intention of remaining a major player in the mobile space.

The move to buy Motorola Mobility gives Google greater access to the development of Android-compatible handsets, in addition to its existing software-development capabilities.

But more importantly, this deal gives Google a major boost in its patent battles with Apple and Microsoft.

This is an extract from an article written by Dr Srikumar Venugopal, Lecturer in the UNSW School of Computer Science and Engineering, for The Conversation. Read the full article here.