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By rsmiller
via itknowledgeexchange.techtarget.com
Published: Jan 07 2014 / 11:00

You may wonder why Google decided to give Android away when they could make so much money charging even a modest amount per phone. I think it's because they knew they were two years behind Apple when they launched Android. They knew they needed to grow quickly and free scales rapidly. And it worked, probably better than they ever imagined.
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lburnham123 replied ago:

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"...And that’s because it’s much more valuable for them to have phones in the hands of the maximum number of people possible than it is to make a few bucks every time the phone gets sold...." It should be noted that Google does make money per device for a large number of devices sold - namely those that come with Google's suite of apps preinstalled. Those apps (primarily the Play Store app) are not free to use. And they get 30% of all revenue made via the Play Store.

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rsmiller replied ago:

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Fair enough, but they are giving away the core OS and that has additional value they could be monetizing if they chose to do so.

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