What does Google need from Android?
Benedict Evans has an interesting view of Google’s strategy:
In other words, Android, like Plus, allows Google to tie searches and advertising to individual people and places. In the long term, the data that Google gets from Android users is probably just as important as Pagerank in understanding intent and relevance in search.
Hence, the real structural benefit to Google from Android now comes from the understanding it gives of actual users, and the threat comes from devices that do not provide this data – even if, like the iPhone, they do provide plenty of search traffic.
Via Daring Fireball