Motorola buys Good Technology

Mobile email and security firm snapped up by Motorola, potentially causing a headache for Palm

Motorola bought Good Technology, specialists in enterprise mobile computing software and services, on Friday.

Although terms of the transaction have not yet been released, it is known that the Santa Clara-based firm — which is a major player in enterprise mobile email — will be incorporated into Motorola's mobile devices business. Motorola already uses Good's mobile-messaging software on its Q phone.

"The addition of Good Technology will advance Motorola’s vision of seamless mobility," said Ron Garriques, Motorola's mobile devices business president, on Friday. "Good Technology’s software and managed service deliver a rich user experience, low cost of ownership, industry-leading security and enterprise-class support. This acquisition will continue to strengthen Motorola as a leading provider of mobility devices and solutions both for enterprise customers and consumers.”

Analyst Jack Gold, of J Gold Associates, said the move would "dramatically reshape the wireless email marketplace". Describing the move as a delayed reaction to Nokia's acquisition of Intellisync, Gold also pointed out that it could "severely constrain a major relationship that has put Good on the map — the one with Palm and the Treo devices, a very large part of Good’s business".

"This equally puts pressure on Palm, as their leading email app just got purchased by a competitor. What do they do now to maintain market share? I think this gives Palm more incentive to promote the Windows platform over the Palm OS, as Windows Mobile — at least the latest versions — does not require a third party client," Gold added, suggesting that Palm itself might now be more keen to be acquired.

Gold also pointed to Motorola's recent acquisition of Symbol as another sign that the manufacturer was keen to push further into the enterprise sector, but suggested the new move was "questionable" on Motorola's part, saying: "I don’t think it will particularly help their device sales and I’m not sure they will be able to successfully manage this type of acquisition."

Earlier this year, Good Technology was hit by a patent claim filed by rival email vendor Visto, which claimed Good's products infringed on four of its mobile data patents.

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