Google won approval
. from Chinese regulators for its $12.5 billion purchase of Motorola Mobility , clearing a final hurdle for a deal.
The deal helps Google better compete with Apple's iPhone and gain more clout for its Android software as it expands in the hardware business. It also arms the company a trove of 17,000 patents to protect Android devices in legal disputes with competitors.
The acquisition had already been approved in Europe, the U.S. and other jurisdictions worldwide.
As part of the approval, Google will have to ensure that Android software versions are free and open over the next five years, China?s Ministry of Commerce said in a statement on its website.