The Chinese government’s Anti-Monopoly Bureau announced it’s extending its investigation of Google’s proposed deal to buy Motorola Mobility.
The deal has already been approved by U.S. regulators.
In a statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Motorola Mobility and Google said they continue to work closely with the Chinese Anti-Monopoly Bureau of the Ministry of Commerce People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM) to help it conclude the investigation and expects the transaction to close during the first half of 2012.
At stake for Google is its huge proposed purchase of mobile phone and tablet maker Motorola Mobility announced last August for about $12.5 billion.
Google has said it plans to run the company as a separate subsidiary and continue to support all of its Android partners equally in terms of access to the latest builds of the software.
Google is also expected to release a branded version of an Android tablet later this year that some reports say will be built by Asus.
While there are a plethora of Android tablets, models with the latest Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4) have been slow coming to market even though Google first made the software available late last year.
Critics have said the Android market of devices is too fragmented with so many devices running different versions of the sofware and that Google and its partners need to provide a more consistent software platform across devices.
Ironically, the best-selling Android tablet is Amazon’s Kindle Fire which runs a so-called “fork” or highly customized version of the early Android 2.3 software.