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Google’s Acquisition Of Motorola Was For 17,000 Patents, But Only 18 May Be Needed For Battle

In the past few weeks, the tech world has been shadowed by a bunch of lawsuits filed by all of the big names. Apple, Microsoft, Oracle, and Google, all seem to be preparing for an epic showdown in the court room.

Two weeks ago though, Google made the huge announcement that they would be purchasing Motorola Mobility for the tune of $12.5 billion. The reason behind the purchase was quite obvious, in that Google needed the 17,000 patents that Moto held (7,500 additional still pending), to protect their beloved Android OS from other sue happy corporations. It is now making light, that 18 in particular of some 17,000 patents may be needed to secure the future of Android against other mobile operating systems. So of those 24,500 patents, it the battle for Android could come down to a select few. As in the wise words of Bart Simpson, “Ay caramba!”

This quote from patent lawyer David Mixon was put on record over at Phandroid:

One patent from 2001 disables a “touch sensitive” sensor when a smartphone is near a user’s head to prevent inadvertent hang-ups or dialing. Another from 1994 aims to increase data storage, while a third enables users to control when a global positioning system sends their location data over a network.

At the start of 2011, Google was the holder of just over 1,000 patents of their own, so adding Moto’s 17,000+ should definitely broaden their chances of crushing any lawsuits aimed at them.  It is still anyone’s guess as to when this will all shake out, but this battle is far from over.

What is everyone’s views on all of the legal news? Getting tiresome? Maybe we can get #TeamGoog trending on Twitter?

Via: Phandroid, Bloomberg

  • Anonymous

    tinyurl.com/2df4ccp

  • Jeffrey Garcia

    Google paid 12.5 billion on Motorola for just 18 meaningful patents?

    • Anonymous

      All that they come up with in the future couldnt hurt either.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Brian-Trahan/100001039912055 Brian Trahan

      Yes but the dirty little secret is that Moto. Mobile also had all of their cable box business in it as well. So  Google TV also got a huge boost.

  • Crack Monkey

    As a software engineer my view of software patents is that they will curtail innovation. if you happen to think up a solution to a logical problem which is what software engineers do you will now have to make sure nobody has filed a patent. Once while doing patent searches for a company I worked for some 20 years ago I saw a patent for a “for loop” in C. This simple concept was patented by a big well know company.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_B4OGBROXQZNX5C4XDTX6ICYMXQ Gilda Cameron

    I just paíd $22.85 for an íPad 2-64GB and my girlfriend loves her her Panasoníc Lumíx GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.78 there arriving tomorrow by UPS. I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $625 which only cost me $62.81 to buy. Here is the website we use to get it all from, Centb.côm

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  • Guest

    What i dont understand, is Microsoft and Apple can see these patents, and they didnt seem to be too scared of them…why will it be different in Google’s hands?

    • Anonymous

      I imagine it is because before, Android was not in Motorola’s hands and thus they could not be used to defend Android.

    • Kinchas

      This suit is about settling cross licensing agreements.  No company holds all the patents to produce a smartphone.  The solution to that is for parties to enter into cross licensing agreements.  It is likely the patents mentioned above are the reason for these suits.  Moto wanted more for one or more of its patents than Apple and MS wanted to pay.  Solution. SUE.

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  • http://twitter.com/binglut9 Brian

    This will be great for android and to the people who think HTC and Samsung will get mad is a complete idiot

  • Stephen

    I saw a chart of the cluster f**k of patent litigations going on right now in the tech world.  Funny thing — Google’s not suing anybody for anything.

    http://image.minyanville.com/assets/FCK_Jan2011/Image/Schuster/Mobile%20Patent%20Suits%20-%20Reuters.jpg

  • Anonymous

    I like this idea. If you sue for copyright infringement and loose, you loose the patient and it gets placed in the public domain :-) You certainly wouldn’t be suing then unless it was blatantly infringement!!!

  • Anonymous

    The third patent is useless. Iphone users can’t control whether their gps location is turned on or off.

    • EC8CH

      depending on how they hold their phone controls which antenna loses connection.

      • Anonymous

        I was referring to the location tracking scandal. But that works too.

        • Anonymous

          I just paíd $20.87 for an íPad 2.64GB and my boyfriend loves his Panasoníc Lumíx GF 1 Cámera that we got for $38.79 there arriving tomorrow by UP S.I will never pay such expensive retail príces in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LCD T V to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy.
          Here is the website we use to get it all from : http://BidsBit.com

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jeff-Bernard/100001785826703 Jeff Bernard

      yes you can

      • Anonymous

        Why so serious?

  • Anonymous

    What happen to the days when a patent was something really tangible? Something specific?  Now it seems you can patent any idea or concept.  Maybe I should patent the idea of man traveling to Mars and when NASA finally does it, sue them for enfringment on my patent.  We have become a planet of law suit happy idiots.

  • Anonymous

    What happen to the days when a patent was something really tangible? Something specific?  Now it seems you can patent any idea or concept.  Maybe I should patent the idea of man traveling to Mars and when NASA finally does it, sue them for enfringment on my patent.  We have become a planet of law suit happy idiots.

    • Tom

      That is how it is supposed to be! It has to be unique and identifiable on some physical level, even if it is merely code on a page for software or genetic code. Patenting a concept or idea is not supposed to be possible because that PREVENTS creativity. 

      As far as I know that principle is still in place for genes and drugs and even technology. You can’t patent the idea of GUI, hell if that was the case, then Apple would be the only computer company right now (or at least everyone would be paying royalties), because they were the first to mass market that idea and probably would have been the first to patent it because Xerox Parc did not. So long as the code was different and the same thing was done in a different manner, everything was kosher. And as far as I know that is how patents still work in Europe. Why did it change in America? I don’t know… perhaps we really are lawsuit happy bastards. But really we NEED to go back and make those points clear so that we ENCOURAGE creativity and fight off stagnation. It is because of Android that Apple iOS has multitasking. It was the threat that made it pertinent. And it is because of iOS that Windows felt the need to update their archaic OS (and when you think about it, Google simply took the best of both worlds to create Android). It is how progress works and all these lawsuits are destroying progress. 

      • Anonymous

        I think the main problem is that the American patent system has never understood the electronic world. Once all the older generation dies out and ours takes over, I think we will see that change.

  • GreenGrass

    I think we need more law suits against the ‘BAD’ apple.  They haven’t figured out everything on their own either.  Although, the fanboy’s have filled the coffers with enough $$ to keep them going.  Competition is good lets let innovation take over and the consumers decide.  I just can’t stand how they like to rake everyone in the world over the coals for extra money, just because they have a tiny patent on something that shouldn’t have been patented anyway.

  • http://twitter.com/Rocko9999 Rocko Smith

    No No No. Google bought Moto for Blur people, Blur!

    Hahahahahaaa.

  • Andrew T Bense

    I like it, I love it, I want some more of it :D

  • http://twitter.com/dwonderly David Wonderly

    Okay, now I am understanding the logic of this. It’s not about able to go on the offense, it’s about the defense. That is what the move should be. In order to turn Apple from suing they will now have the power to use the same weapon.

    Meaning that these mobile patent wars will turn out this way. Everyone is infringing on everyone. Now Google has the power to flex some muscle as well. Yet another reason software patents should go away.

    • Anonymous

      Some kid has patented swinging sideways on a swing.

    • Anonymous

      People have used the cold war as an analogy for the forthcoming patent dispute between Google/Android and Apple. As you just explained, these patents are not an offensive move on Google’s part. They won’t strike the first blow, and if anyone from Apple ever studied game theory, they won’t strike the first blow either. It would be mutually assured destruction/bankruptcy, even with Apple’s giant net worth.

      A strange game. The only winning move is not to play.

      How about a nice game of chess?

      • Stephen

        I was just talking to a buddy about game theory and these law suits.  +1 for you haha

      • Anonymous

        .I just paíd $20.82 for an íPad 2.64GB and my boyfriend loves his Panasoníc Lumíx GF 1 Cámera that we got for $38.79 there arriving tomorrow by UP S.I will never pay such expensive retail príces in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LCD T V to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy.
        Here is the website we use to get it all from, bit.ly/BidShop

      • http://www.facebook.com/TJHRULZ tjhrulz
    • zack

      I agree but apple can’t have anyone outsmarting them. Oh but wait apple has added a notification bar in OS 5 for i*phone.

      • Anonymous

        Android just has notification bar, Apple has a magical and revolutionary notification bar.

    • Kinchas

      In all probability it is patents like the one above that led to the lawsuit between Apple and Moto.  No one company holds all of the patents necessary to produce a smartphone.  The normal way to deal with this is for the players to cross license their patents…freeing up the process.  These kinds of lawsuits usually happen when parties cant come to an agreement on the cross licensing.  There have been a couple of blogs that suggest, at the end of the day Moto will earn more for its patents than it pays out for others. If that is the case…Moto probably wanted more money for a cross license with Apple…than Apple wanted to pay.  Solution. SUE.  Finally, you may hold a patent, but it is not valid until tested in court.  That’s why patent holders often don’t want to actually go all the way.  Better to settle and leave the validity of a less than perfect patent untested.    Apple, MS and Moto all face that.  I think they will all settle. And that would be the perfect ending. All the rest of the lawsuits would pretty much go away at that point.

  • EC8CH

    “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers”

    • GreenGrass

      Then the folks at apple and the folks at HTC can just duel it out, weapon of choice like in the old days!

      • EC8CH

        GREAT IDEA!

        Here’s how you reform patent law:

        Loosing Council gets eliminated Mortal Combat style.

      • Anonymous

        i think even a middle school kid can punk steve jobs

  • FortitudineVincimus

    So does this mean they clrealy knew they were wrong and this is how they plan to fix it?

    • EC8CH

      No it means now we all have ridiculously general non-novel patents.  Let’s pay our lawyers lots of money to talk to each other.

    • Anonymous

      Sure, and that’s also why the named companies also bought their patents.