WSJ Profile on Google and Motorola’s Clashing Cultures

Shayndi Raice, writing for the WSJ:

A key difference between the companies stems from Motorola’s focus on hardware and Google’s on software. That helps explain why Google is more able to take risks, Mr. Jha said. If he worked at Google and “wrote a little bit of code, and if there are bugs, I can fix it later,” he said. “When I deliver a phone, I don’t have that flexibility.”

Like when Motorola promised a tablet with support for 4G networking, shipped it without it, and told users not to worry, someday they’d be required to send the tablet back to Motorola to get it? That sort of flexibility?

The employees — About 20,000 at Motorola Mobility and nearly 29,000 at Google — will have to get used to each other. One former Android executive boasted that Google employees has [sic], on average, 20 IQ points more than their Motorola counterparts.

Who knows who this unnamed “former Android executive” is, but if that’s even vaguely indicative of the average Google employee’s estimation of their Motorola counterparts, get me some popcorn. This is going to be fun.

Update: The article has since been edited to remove the line about IQ points. The above quote was in the original version.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011