Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt insists Android will remain “open” and other device manufacturers have no reason to be concerned by Google's proposed takeover of Motorola.
The software giant agreed to slap down upwards of $12bn for Motorola Motorola back in August, leading to speculation that Moto will be given a leg-up against rivals like HTC and Samsung. Schmidt, however, insists they have nothing to fear.
The former Google CEO chose to address the issue during a visit to South Korea, where he told reporters: “in general, with all of our partners, we told them that the Motorola deal will close and we will run it sufficiently and independently, that it will not violate the openness of Android.”
Crucially, that includes charging other manufacturers to use the OS in the first place, probably the most obvious way Motorola could be given an advantage.
Schmidt's comments echo those of current Google boss Larry Page when the Motorola deal was first announced, who insisted that Motorola would be run “as a separate business” and Google's commitment to other OEMs remained undiminished.
That came on the back of claims that the deal would help “supercharge” Android – which everyone interpreted as meaning there would surely be some benefit to Motorola too. And let's be clear, Schmidt wouldn't be making practically the same reassurances all over again if the likes of Samsung and HTC weren't still expressing some very real doubts. It's kind of what happens when you spend $12bn.
In the end, actions are going to speak louder than words here, and it may well be that the best result for all concerned will be if Motorola does well, but not too well, under Google's control.