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US, EU sign off Google's Motorola purchase

The colossal purchase of Motorola Mobility by search giant Google came two big steps closer today, with both US and European antitrust authorities giving their approval. 


The deal, worth US$12.5 billion, was first announced in August, but regulators had to perform thorough checks to make sure Motorola’s hefty patent portfolio won’t give Google too much sway over competitors.


Both authorities expressed intentions to monitor the environment to make sure standard patents are being licensed fairly.


"In light of the importance of this industry to consumers,” the US Department of Justice says in a release, "the division continues to monitor the use of SEPs [Standard Essential Patents] in the wireless device industry, particularly in the smartphone and tablet markets.”


Likewise came this from the European Commission: "This transaction does not itself raise competition issues. Of course, the Commission will continue to keep a close eye on the behaviour of all market players in the sector, particularly the increasingly strategic use of patents.”


Authorities in China, Taiwan and Israel still need to sign off the acquisition.


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