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Google and Samsung are not happy about Microsoft's Nokia buyout

Firms claim deal will result in higher patent licensing fees
Mon Mar 03 2014, 13:42
Nokia Lumia 1320 has a 6in 720p HD screen

ANDROID ADVOCATES Google and Samsung reportedly are not happy about Microsoft's Nokia buyout, and have joined Huawei and ZTE to express their concern.

That's according to Bloomberg, which cited "two government officials" as saying that Google and Samsung, along with Huawei and ZTE, have asked China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) to make sure that the deal - set to close this month - doesn't result in higher patent licensing fees for Nokia's patents, and have asked the body to set conditions on the deal.

The two firms also said they are "concerned" that Microsoft will abuse the smartphone market, hinting that they might be worried about Windows Phone eating away at Android's majority share.

Microsoft declined to comment on the report, saying vaguely, "This merger application is currently under MOFCOM's review and we have no further comment."

Despite the concern shown by Google and Samsung, Bloomberg added that the Chinese regulator is likely to give Microsoft's Nokia acquisition its seal of approval.

Microsoft's acquisition of Nokia's devices business gained approval from European regulators in December, shortly after it was given the thumbs up by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC). However, the European Commission (EC) was keen to point out that it would keep a keen eye on Microsoft's post-merger licensing plans.

That said, the EC doesn't seem to think Google and Samsung have anything to worry about. It said, "The Commission concluded that the transaction would not raise any competition concerns, in particular because there are only modest overlaps between the parties' activities and the links between Microsoft's mobile operating systems, mobile applications and enterprise mail server software with Nokia's smart mobile devices are unlikely to lead to competitors being shut out from the market."

Google and Samsung have yet to respond to our requests for comment. µ


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