The well-publicised conflict between Google and the Chinese authorities over censorship of search results and email hacks could be heading towards a resolution, after a Chinese official announced that no opposition would be made to the launch of Android-based smartphones in the largest nation on earth.
Android has been held back from the Chinese market as Google attempts to resolve its differences with the authorities and legislation governing freedom of information and expression.
However, Zhu Hongren, who heads the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, has now said that no alterations would be required to the Android software as long as Google is willing to adhere to the laws of China.
The result could be that Android-based smartphones from LG and Samsung, which were ready for launch in China, could emerge after all, but with any evidence of the Google brand completely removed.
This would, of course, mean that apps such as GMail and Google Maps would be omitted and might deter mobile manufacturers from launching Android smartphones because they would offer inferior performance.
Although Google has threatened to remove its business from China entirely, it has still yet to confirm what action it will take next.
This suggests that the Chinese authorities are happy to accommodate further negotiations and are not opposed to Google's products outright.