Strategy Analytics said that Google’s proposed US$12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola “could help Google make Android into a platform that offers unrivalled revenue opportunities,” although the alliance is not without risk.
According to the company, Google will be able to use its acquisition of Motorola to address “three critical flaws” with Android: a subpar ecosystem for consumers and developers; APIs that are not specifically focused on improving usability; and fragmentation. It notes that “although Google innovated consistently with the Android platform, it has failed to effectively tie software upgrades to new hardware which developers could leverage in order to create new compelling apps.”
Josh Martin, director of Apps Research at Strategy Analytics, said: “providing developers with an environment in which they can succeed will be critical to building long-term support – support which is essential to consumer interest.” The comparison was drawn with Apple, which has used its control over both iOS hardware and software to deliver “a platform that focuses more on experience than technical specifications.”
In its acquisition conference call, Google stressed that it intends continuing its Android business as usual, with Motorola functioning as an independent business. There is a danger that if it aligns its Android developments too closely with handsets from Motorola, other important partners such as Samsung, HTC and LG Electronics may review their platform commitments – all three of these companies also have Windows Phone 7 engagements, for example.