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Rick Osterloh Cher Wang

Google has announced it completed the acquisition process of Taiwanese device maker HTC; or at least its smartphone division.

The deal, valued at $1.1 billion (£785 million), will see some 2,000 HTC engineers join the ranks of the search giant. Google will also receive a non-exclusive license of the Taiwanese firm’s intellectual properties (IPs).

As first announced last September, HTC will keep operating independently with regard to its virtual reality (VR) operations inside the standalone Vive VR division, and will also bring to market a number of HTC-branded smartphones too.

In addition to a team that has already worked on the two Pixel smartphones (which were outsourced to HTC), Google is also gaining a big facility in Taipei, Taiwan, which marks its biggest new headquarters in South-East Asia and establishes a noteworthy presence in the area.

“I’m delighted that we’ve officially closed our deal with HTC, and are welcoming an incredibly talented team to work on even better and more innovative products in the years to come,” Rick Osterloh, Google’s senior VP of hardware, wrote in the blog post.

“These new colleagues bring decades of experience achieving a series of ‘firsts’ particularly in the smartphone industry — including bringing to market the first 3G smartphone in 2005, the first touch-centric phone in 2007, and the first all-metal unibody phone in 2013.”

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