Spending $12.5 billion on Motorola’s Mobility division has given Google a great deal of publicity in what it means for so-called ‘Smart’ phones in the future. But there are other implications for the broadcast industry because of its ‘Google TV’ product, which some now see as providing an open door into Latin America’s cable business and to a certain extent the region’s DTH players. Motorola has significant penetration rates throughout Latin America.
For example, cable MSOs such as Claro; Tigo-Amnet (Millicom Group), in addition to Megacable, Cablevisión, Cablecom Mexico; Cablevisión Argentina; VTR Chile; Inter, Netuno, CableHogar Venezuela; Cableonda and Cable & Wireless Panama; TV Cable Ecuador and Cabletica in Costa Rica, among others, are all operating with Motorola supplied systems. It seems more than likely that Google will find an open door into the market as the business leader of the region. The UK’s Pace is also busy in Latin America with its HD-ready PVRs, but often hooking into a Motorola-based head-end system.
The purchase of Motorola Mobility – which is expected to close towards the end of 2011 or early 2012 – is certainly being seen as strengthening the potential for its Google TV service, which has yet to be deployed in the USA, and has yet to touch Latin America.