In recent weeks Apples market capitalisation briefly surpassed Exxon Mobil (making it the world’s largest company even though it’s revenues are roughly a quarter of Exxon’s) and it has left it’s shell-shocked rival Samsung reeling after obtaining an injunction on Galaxy tablet/mobile sales in Europe after claiming they slavishly copy the iPad/iPhone. This may seem like good news but it is sure to have an effect on Apples brand. For so long they were the plucky underdog who were resuscitated from the brink of death but with recent actions they are in danger of being seen as the school bully.
This potential PR backlash and Google’s recent $12.5bn purchase of Motorola puts these giants on a direct course for an explosive battle. Google’s Motorola deal transforms them from a purely software company into one that now builds smartphones and tablets. Motorola are no longer a cutting edge brand but they have an armoury of over 17,000 patents. It is this protection that Google is interested in as it seeks to protect it’s Android operating system. The deal seems like an expensive insurance policy and leaves Google with partner issues if they beef up the Motorola brand.
But one thing is for sure – it has transformed Google and created an interesting playing field with the newly aggressive Apple ready for the game.