Everyone is wondering just what Google plans to do with Motorola, which it announced this morning that it plans to buy for $12.5 billion. Does the company want to start making hardware to better compete with Apple, or is it just in it for the patents? Before the search giant can get its hands on the venerable handset manufacturer, though, it will have to undergo scrutiny from the FTC, which must approve the purchase.
Sometimes the government blocks these deals for any one of a number of reasons (usually to preserve competition in the market place), and when that happens, both parties are usually left in a tough spot, embarrassed and abused. As part of its deal with Motorola, Google has agreed to pay the company a whopping $2.5 billion "break-up fee" if it fails get the purchase approved-- a much higher sum than is typically offered. It's a big bet, and one that could end up hurting given the Internet company's current precarious position with the Trade Commission.