Search giant in return to smartphone manufacturing.
Google and HTC have announced that Google has bought part of the Taiwan based HTC’s mobile phone division for a staggering $1.1 billion, the companies have announced.
Google’s Vice-President of hardware, Rick Osterloh said in a blog post: “…We’ve signed an agreement with HTC, a leader in consumer electronics, that will fuel even more product innovation in the years ahead. With this agreement, a team of HTC talent will join Google as part of the hardware organization. These future fellow Googlers are amazing folks we’ve already been working with closely on the Pixel smartphone line, and we’re excited to see what we can do together as one team.”
Terms & Conditions apply
Under the deal, Google will acquire the vast majority of the current team who already develop the Pixel smartphone for the global tech giant, receive a non-exclusive license for HTC’s intellectual property, and a rather profoundly worded commitment to seek out areas for future collaboration.(…new life, and to boldly go where no one has gone before, (probably))
HTC and the Pixel
Updated versions of the Google Pixel line are due to be released next month. The new deal has been widely touted as reaffirming the Google’s broadening ambitions in smartphone production.
For its part, the move couldn’t have come at a better time for the struggling Taiwanese HTC. The company was once a major player in the smartphone market and seen as a innovative force to be reckoned with. In recent years, however, it has struggled to compete with the likes of Apple and Samsung in recent times.
Google, who are they again?
Google of course, is the developer behind the Android operating system that powers some 80% of the world’s current smartphones, but the company has mostly relied on third-party manufacturers such as Samsung, Huawei and HTC itself to make and sell the hardware to run the OS. However, Google did launch its own Pixel brand range of phones last year, (made by HTC,) but according to latest figures the Pixel has less than 1% of the total market share. Most of the new Google staff acquired by Google are already involved with the Pixel smartphone.