Google’s Larry Page announced that the company has purchased Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion, or $40 per share. The move increases Google’s size by roughly 60 percent.

Page explained the move in a blog post. “We are always looking for new ways to supercharge the Android ecosystem,” he wrote. Page was careful to point out, however, that the acquisition “will not change our commitment to run Android as an open platform.”

In addition to bolstering its standing in the mobile market, and edging out its major competitor Apple, the acquisition also significantly increases Google’s patent portfolio. Motorola Mobility currently has 14,600 granted patents and 6,700 pending patent applications. CNN’s Fortune suggests that the real reason Google made the acquisition is to bolster its patent portfolio, rather than out of some nebulous interest to break into the less lucrative hardware manufacturing business.

Page’s post points out that Motorola is a leader in the fields of home devices and video solutions, and he says that the acquisition will help Google “accelerate innovation in this space.” Google’s partners immediately welcomed the news, issuing press releases that emphasized the importance that this acquisition had in “defending Android, its partners, and the ecosystem” (Samsung), “defending Android and its partners” (Sony Ericsson and LG Electronics), “ and “defending Android, its partners, and the entire ecosystem” (HTC).

Despite these comments, there are serious questions about how Google’s partner companies such as Samsung and HTC really feel about the deal. By acquiring Motorola, Google is entering the hardware market, which means that it will be competing directly with other manufacturers (read Samsung, HTC, etc.) which are, ostensibly, its partners. Android’s strength rested largely on their adoption of the platform, rather than going with Apple or Microsoft. Now that they will be competing directly with Google, will they actively seek other platforms for their products?

Motorola Mobility was one of two companies created in 2011 by splitting eight-decade old Motorola. It targets consumers, while the second company, Motorola solutions, targets business customers.

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