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Motorola snaps up a mobile OS software firm

Might ditch Android, or enhance it
Thu May 06 2010, 15:07

WIRELESS EQUIPMENT MANUFACTURER Motorola looks to have snapped up the little known mobile software outfit Azingo.

Azingo has a number of mobile oriented products on its books, however one, its Mobile 2.0 operating system is sure to raise eyebrows. The Linux based operating system seems to go head to head with Google's Android operating system that has been embraced so successfully by Motorola.

The news was picked up when an employee updated his Linkedin profile by saying that he now works for Motorola "by acquisition". The acquisition itself isn't particularly surprising, given that the firm's Co-CEO, Greg Brown told Bloomberg only last week that it was time for Motorola to "do some non-organic things". We assume that's corporate speak for buying smaller companies.

Given that his colleague, Sanjay Jha, recently said that "owning your OS is important", the tie-up with Azingo, with its relative anonymity possibly avoiding a bidding war, means the hookup isn't completely pie in the sky. The interesting part to all this is whether the acquisition will change Motorola's view about using the Android operating system, which has served it so well in the past year.

It's unlikely that Motorola will want to throw away what Android has brought to the firm, especially after its previous lack of direction in mobile phones for a few years. Another possibility is that Motorola might use Azingo's software expertise to jump start further development of its Motoblur social notworking aggregation frontend.

Google is unlikely to lose much sleep over Motorola's acquisition, having got just about every handset maker except Apple to load its operating system onto their devices.

Motorola, on the other hand, having seen the success of its Droid smartphone in the US, might want to think twice before spoiling a good thing simply to massage its corporate ego. µ


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