The Google/Motorola firewall is a horrible idea, we tried the same thing at Nokia with S60

Google will soon swallow up Motorola. The search giant says it’s all about patents, but I, and pretty much every other member of the tech press, thinks they’re lying. Andy Rubin, the father of Android, recently gave an interview at Mobile World Congress where he discussed the issue. The guys at The Verge were in attendance:

Rubin said he was “painfully aware” of concerns, but stressed that Google has “literally built a firewall” between the Android team and Motorola. “I don’t even know anything about their products, I haven’t seen anything,” he said. “They’re going to continue building Motorola branded devices and it’s going to be the same team doing it.”

That sounds an awful lot like what Nokia did with S60. See, when I worked at Nokia back in 2008/2009 I just so happened to have a cubicle on the 6th floor of the company’s headquarters in Espoo. Half of that floor was dedicated to the folks in Corporate Strategy, the other half was meant for the guys who were working at S60. Their half was separated by an actual glass wall. To enter their “private area” you needed the proper credentials on your badge. Why was this done? At the time Nokia was trying to get Samsung, LG, and others, to build Symbian devices. Despite Nokia owning and maintaing the Symbian operating system, they built a separate unit called S60 that was “firewalled” from the rest of the company so that they could do business with Nokia’s competitors.

Long story short, S60 doesn’t exist anymore. And those folks who were separated from us by an actual wall and different badges, they shared a break room with us strategists on the other side. As for the wall itself, that advanced NFC enabled door was left open most of the day because it was more of a nuisance than anything else. Don’t you think we heard, saw, and knew about what they were working on?

Andy is telling the press what they want to hear, but if anyone believes that this “firewall” will last then they’re seriously not using their critical thinking skills. Google is simply delaying the eventual bombshell they’re going to drop when they announce their first vertically integrated smartphone.

  • Anonymous

    Completely agree but do you think the physical distance between Mountain View and Schaumburg could help them pull it off? 

    • This isn’t going to come out right, but I’ll say it anyway: The engineers, marketing people, designers, none of them matter. It’s all about what the big bosses in charge are going to be talking about, and it’s telling that Google just replaced Motorola’s CEO with one of their own.

  • Hey Googarola, open up our bootloaders and get rid of Blur!

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