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The rumors are (mostly) true: Google is buying a part of HTC to beef up its hardware business.

Google announced the agreement late Wednesday. Senior Vice President of Hardware Rick Osterloh wrote in a blog post that a “team of HTC talent” would join Google’s hardware team, along with a non-exclusive license for some of HTC’s intellectual property.

The deal is less dramatic than what was expected by many — that Google would buy HTC’s entire smartphone business in a long-term bid to go toe-to-toe with Apple in the smartphone market — but it does show Google felt it needed more direct control over hardware assets to be more nimble competitor.  Read more…

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