What the Google-Lenovo Deal for Motorola Means for Gov Security

Motorola-branded company provides key security and intelligence services for U.S. government.

by / January 30, 2014

For more than 40 years, it was easy to spot a government worker in the field. That’s because often, they were carrying a Motorola handheld device. 

Motorola-built technology and receivers carried the voices of astronauts, pilots and even presidents across the globe and as far away as the moon. 

Today, when soldiers communicate using two-way radio, or a U.S. passport is scanned, or inventory at a VA hospital is logged, there’s a better-than-good chance it’s going through a device or network provided by Motorola Solutions. 

Then there’s homeland and customs security. When you see a security camera at the airport or at a port, it very well could be a Motorola product.  

State and local governmental officials still use the company's products for policing and public safety.

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So, with news that Google is selling Motorola for $2.9 billion to Lenovo, a China-based computer manufacturer, some Government Technology readers undoubtedly wondered, “What does this mean for governmental security services utilizing Motorola technology?”

Absolutely nothing.

“We’re not part of the sale,” explained Motorola Solutions spokesman Kurt Ebenhoch. “It has no impact on us. We were spun off from the Google sale two years ago, and we act as an independent company.” 

When Google bought the cell- and smartphone business from Motorola for almost $13 billion in 2012, Motorola Solutions became its own company and continued focusing on providing security and informations services to governments. 

Meanwhile, Google took the mobile device arm of Motorola and renamed it Motorola Mobility. 

For those who may have been confused, there’s good reason: Both companies still use Motorola as a shorthand, as well as an almost identical corporate logo. 

“We’ve gotten some questions on it,” said Ebenhoch. “People are interested. But nothing’s changed.” 

John Sepulvado

John Sepulvado is from Southern California. He enjoys writing, reading and wants to take up fishing. He wrote for Government Technology for a short time in 2014.