There comes a time in every major tech corporation's life when it has to let its previously-acquired but only tangentially-related asset go as part of a complex transaction with a multinational electronics firm. For Google, that time came today, when it announced that it would sell Motorola Mobility to Lenovo for $2.91 billion.
I, too, feel your pain. The idea of a Google-run phone manufacturer was, to me, a kind of techno-nirvana. Read More
That hotly anticipated Android 4.2.2 update for the AT&T HTC One was approved for distribution yesterday, but now it's reportedly hitting devices. Users on XDA report that a small 16MB update is showing up first, then sometime later, the big 537MB update to Android 4.2.2 appears.
Google may have just sold Motorola Mobility to Lenovo, but it seems the giant may have kept one of the manufacturer's juiciest pieces (besides patents) to itself.
According to Pocket-lint, Lenovo has confirmed that Google will be keeping Moto's Advanced Technology and Projects group, notably responsible for Project Ara, the modular phone project announced in October in collaboration with Phonebloks, and other experimental ventures.
The team, led by former DARPA Director Regina Dugan is said by the Verge to be heading to Google's Android team, reporting to Sundar Pichai. Read More
Google's Chromecast is cheap and awesome, but it only performs a very specific set of functions, and even venturing out as far as tab casting gives murky results. Dell's Wyse Cloud Connect, formerly known as Project Ophelia, is a little dongle that can toss up a full Android desktop on any HDMI or MHL-enabled display, and it's now available for purchase. It comes with complete access to the Play Store, so you can use it to keep up with episodes of The Daily Show, listen to Lady Gaga, defend towers, or, you know, be productive. Read More
Update: Google has announced that the deal is official on its investor relations site, and Motorola had its say too. The deal is worth $2.91 billion, with $1.41 billion paid at closing ($660m in cash and $750m in stock). Lenovo gets 2000 patents in the deal, plus a licensing arrangement with Google. Original post follows.
Google is always doing surprising things, but this is probably not something anyone would have predicted yesterday. Read More
AllThingsD spinoff Re/code is reporting this morning that Google and Samsung have reached a series of "broad agreements" regarding the latter's modifications to the Android OS, and it may be music to the ears of Android enthusiasts everywhere.
According to an unnamed source (of course!), Google wasn't exactly happy with the direction the Korean OEM had been moving with the OS, particularly in the way it had been promoting its own content services on devices. Read More
Not content with being the world's biggest phone manufacturer, Samsung has decided to break into the retail space in a big way. The company already has three stand-alone Samsung stores in Spain, operated by the established retailer Carphone Warehouse. Now the two companies have announced that Samsung will expand the program, completely converting over 60 existing Carphone Warehouse retail locations into Samsung-excusive stores.
Samsung already operates "mini stores" inside many Best Buy retail locations. Read More
LG is expected to make the G Pro 2 official at Mobile World Congress next month, but the device is parading around in front of the camera already. The images that popped up on a Korean forum look just like you might expect. It's has those back-mounted buttons from the G2, but on a larger frame.
There's nothing for scale in the photo, so it's hard to tell exactly how big the phone is – the placement and size of the buttons make it look at least a little larger. Read More
Diversify and fill all niches. Samsung seems to have learned its basic sciences, because they're applying a naturalist approach to the tablet market: a ton of models for consumers, new specialized versions for professionals, and now a tablet made just for the lucrative education market. Today Samsung announced a new Galaxy Tab especially for K-12 schools. It's only new in a technical sense - the hardware is clearly a black 10-inch Galaxy Tab 3. Read More
Last month the upgraded Butterfly S got the last version of Jelly Bean and the shiny new Sense 5.5 UI, and it looks like HTC's software team has worked their way to the original Butterfly model. Noted HTC leaker @LlabTooFer posted the over-the-air update screen this morning, and at least one blog showed the same software update going out in Malaysia yesterday. According to a Twitter reply, the Taiwanese variant is being updated as well. Read More