Google buys MMI

And with that the great mobile patent wars quiet down. Ianticipate that Google will offer patent indemnity to its partnersin short order. The public price is $12.5 billion, but given thatMMI has $3B of cash on hand, it’s really a $9.5B deal.

The various extortion and extinguishing rackets will disappear.I’ve seen some questionable analysis from the regular shillsdeclaring that this changes nothing because Microsoft and Apple areboth suing Motorola: Microsoft’s suit was utter desperation (itcould rightly have been called the “pretty pretty pretty pleasewill you make Windows Phone devices?” suit), and Apple’s suit cameas a reaction to Motorola’s lawsuit. Both have fizzed in thebackground, with minimal claims, and have in no way represented theapocalyptic all out patent warfare that comes.

Aside from the massive patent haul Google picked up, the otherelement of this purchase that holds opportunity is the PVRbusiness: Motorola provides PVRs to a huge range of cablecompanies. These are powerful little media computers that tend tobe seriously underutilized. They have ethernet ports and USB jacks,yet most act as nothing but dumb terminals.

There is so much potential there. The only hindrance has beenthe cable companies. Hopefully Google can provide some benefitsthat help that industry modernize.

This deal is unfortunate only in that it demotivates Google fromtheir anti-patent quest. Now that they have a significant piece ofthe pie, at a hefty price tag, they’ll be less inclined to argue infavor of much needed reform.

Update: Quite a few are noting, if not mocking, the similaritiesin the pressstatements by the various Android players. Of course theyare coordinated. Does anyone think they didn’t have a gettogether over the weekend to put on a common front? Does anyonethink they didn’t coordinate their response?

It would have been concerning if their responses were of the nocomment, surprised sort. They weren’t surprised.

What takes the award for the most hilarious response, however,is once again courtesy of Gruber.

Warm and glowing these remarks are not, and thesameness is a little creepy.

Warm and glowing? Should they have added smileys and hugs andkisses? They seemed like exactly the response I wouldanticipate.

As one aside, for a period today, and likely to repeat and thenmaintain, AAPL’s market value was greater than double thatof GOOG ($356B vs $177B).