Hoping for a brand new Motorola after it’s done being bought out by Google? You’re not alone. Take comfort in that, because you’ll have good company for commiserating: Motorola vice president of product management and portfolio Alain Mutricy told Fierce Wireless that the company won’t make any big changes after the acquisition. This mirrors statements from Google itself, which has indicated that it’s mostly interested in Motorola’s extensive patent portfolio, and intends to allow it to continue operating as a separate entity.
Of course, there’s already been at least one big change: Google’s booted out Motorola’s CEO Sanjay Jha and intends to promote a currently unknown Google executive to the position to help ease the transition. Even so, the two companies have made a point of staying separate as much as possible in the interim to put on their best face for regulatory agencies, fearing accusations of monopolistic practices. “”I don’t see a very short term, complete change of the product direction,” said Muticy. “I think that we have a business to run, and therefore I think that there is continuity to be expected for 2012.”
While that might be a sound strategy for avoiding the feds, it’s not likely to make Motorola’s customers very happy. Over the past six months poor quality control, slow software updates, continued use of the Blur user interface and all too many locked bootloaders have earned the original DROID maker the ire of Android enthusiasts. Motorola’s relationship with Verizon in particular has drawn criticism (more than a bit of it from yours truly) over expensive tablets and locked bootloaders on the DROID RAZR. Motorola complies with Verizon’s locked bootloader policy, which Samsung and HTC have avoided where possible. Motorola has also delayed Ice Cream Sandwich updates for basically all of its high-end phones until the second half of 2012 at least.
When Google announced its intention to buy Motorola, many Android enthusiasts assumed that Moto would be come the “official” brand for Android, finally making stock software phones and tablets with speedy updates available, and curing the malaise of poor refresh cycles that hangs over the platform. It looks like that’s just not going to happen – enjoy your patents, Google.