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Google-Motorola merger could become official next week

One of the biggest proposed deals in the tech industry in recent memory might finally be completed sometime next week. The Associated Press reports that the Chinese government has given its thumbs up to the merger between Google and Motorola Mobility. China was the last country that needed to give its approval before the deal could officially close. The US and Europe approved the merger deal in February.

The deal was first announced in August 2011, with Google willing to pay $12.5 billion for the wireless smartphone hardware maker. From the beginning, Google has said it plans to operate Motorola Mobility as if it were a separate company. However, there's been a lot of rumors lately that Google wants to launch its own Android powered smartphone and tablets with its own branding. A merger with Motorola, which already makes Android devices, would certainly make that easier.

Google also wants to make the deal in order to obtain the many patents that Motorola has access to. Google will see this move as a way to defend its Android operating system from patent disputes coming from Apple and Microsoft. Indeed, Microsoft and Motorola are already in a pretty fierce patent battle in the courts.

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