Google, the web-search giant, will be carefully scrutinized by US and European regulators as their bid to purchase Motorola Mobility is approved, giving Google possession of 17,000 patents and an additional 7,500 patent applications.
The purchase price for Motorola was a cool $12.5 billion, paving the way for Google to continue to compete with its market rivals such as Apple Inc and also defend itself and other Android manufacturers in patent lawsuits.
Regulators have said they will carefully monitor Google to ensure that all patents that are crucial to the telecommunications industry would be licensed at fair prices. European antitrust authorities as well as the US Department of Justice said they will watch how the patents are used to make sure that they comply with antitrust laws.
The regulators are concerned that the patents, which are critical in making sure that the large number of communications devices on the market, which are sold by many different companies, will be compatible with each other and are licensed for a reasonable fee.
“The (Justice Department’s antitrust) division will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action to stop any anticompetitive use of SEP (standard essential patent) rights,” the Justice Department said in a statement.
The deal with Motorola gives to Google one of the largest patent libraries in the mobile phone industry. Also included in the deal are Motorola’s manufacturing operations which will give Google the ability to create its own line of smart phones.