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Google and Motorola mergered approved by US Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division

Google and Motorola, sittin’ in a tree, etc etc. The US Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division has seen fit to officially bless the union of Google and Motorola, making the acquisition of all those patents legit and effectively turning Google into a hardware manufacturer as well as a software developer.

The Antitrust Division has also formally blessed patent acquisitions made by Apple (of Novell patents) and Microsoft and RIM (of Nortel patents).

“After a thorough review of the proposed transactions, the Antitrust Division has determined that each acquisition is unlikely to substantially lessen competition and has closed these three investigations.

In all of the transactions, the division conducted an in-depth analysis into the potential ability and incentives of the acquiring firms to use the patents they proposed acquiring to foreclose competitors. In particular, the division focused on standard essential patents (SEPs) that Motorola Mobility and Nortel had committed to license to industry participants through their participation in standard-setting organizations (SSOs).

Though the DOJ is warning that it will “not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action to stop any anticompetitive use of SEP rights,” which will no doubt alter future legal wranglings such as the ongoing Samsung-Apple spat.

All that remains now is for the internet to decide how to name the Google-Motorola coupling a la Brangelina. Are we going for Googlarola? Or Motoroogle? Let us know in the comments…

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