Gobbling Google: The search giant's biggest acquisitions (pictures)
Motorola gave Google the resources to get into smartphone manufacturing while also delivering valuable patents for wireless technologies. Those same patents were a lightning rod for patent lawsuits, and a recent ruling went in favor of Google's rival, Apple.
It has not been an easy path for the Motorola unit, though last October, Google unveiled the first phone to come out of Motorola under its wing, the Moto X.
Update January 29 at 2:42 p.m. PT: As January 2014 wound down, Google announced that it is selling the Motorola unit to Lenovo for just under $3 billion.