Remember when Google announced their intent to buy Motorola Mobility back in August 2011? Here we are, almost 9 months later, and the deal still hasn’t closed. Why? Because of China, who has yet to approve the deal for reasons we can’t understand. America has signed off on the acquisition, and so has the EU, but China … something tells us that the government is playing hardball with the world’s most popular search engine. But enough politics, let’s dive into Motorola Mobility’s financial results. The company said they shipped (note: shipped, not sold) 8.9 million mobile devices during the first quarter of this year. Of those, 5.1 million were actually smartphones. That’s pretty freaking terrible. In terms of money, Motorola had $2.2 billion worth of sales, up 3% from the same quarter a year ago. Unlike the same quarter a year ago, where the company lost about $81 million, in Q1 2012 they managed to lose even more, roughly $86 million.
Things obviously aren’t going to well. The important question is what exactly will Google do to Motorola once they get the green light from China? It’s one thing to say that Google is doing this deal for patents, but did you know that Motorola has upwards of 20,500 employees? Compare that to Google’s 33,000 employees. Do you honestly think that Google is going to nearly double their head count? Last month we heard rumors that Google was thinking of offloading Motorola to Huawei. It sounds wild, but when you think about it, it actually makes a lot of sense. Google doesn’t want to enter the hardware game because they don’t want to piss off their partners. Huawei is growing by leaps and bounds because of Android, but their brand is synonymous with cheap devices. If Huawei picks up not just the Motorola brand, but their industrial designers and hardware engineers, we may finally see a worthy competitor to Samsung.