IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

Summary: Google is fortifying its legal defense of the Android mobile operating system with the purchase of over a thousand IBM patents.

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TOPICS: Google, IBM, Legal
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Bloomberg is reporting that IBM has sold Google 1,023 patents to help the search giant build its intellectual property arsenal and further the defense of the Android mobile operating system.

The patent buy actually finalized on August 17th, according to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s website. That link contains the full list of all one thousand-plus patents that Google now has at its command.

But if you're curious (I was), they carry such immensely fascinating titles as "METHOD AND SYSTEM FOR REMOVING HARDWARE DESIGN OVERLAP," "ENCODING AND DETECTION OF BALANCED CODES," and "ANIMATION REUSE IN THREE DIMENSIONAL VIRTUAL REALITY." Well, that last one at least has some promise.

Regardless, we don't know financial details. But what we do know is that Google isn't about to let anything stand in its way in these Android patent battles, acquiring Motorola Mobility for its IP portfolio with one hand and giving Android smartphone manufacturer HTC a bundle of patents with the other.

And that's not even mentioning Intel's recently announced partnership with Google for Android optimization, which could bolster Google's patent defense strategy even further.

The flip-side to all this is that Google's escalation of patent acquisitions also means that the wide, tangled web of mobile IP lawsuits is only going to get more tangled. But that may be good news for fans of court drama.

Topics: Google, IBM, Legal

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  • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

    Looks like Apple's greed is finally going to backfire on them. They apparently just started an all out war.

    Personally, i'm glad to see the snotty bully that is Apple reap what they've sown.
    brother451
    • What, do you live under a rock?

      @brother451
      I don't know whether you just wandered out of the forest or what, but patent wars have been going on since before Apple was formed as a company. If you think they filed the first patent infringement suit, you have some catching up to do.
      Robert Hahn
      • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

        @Robert Hahn Can we at least point to Apple as a rather reasonable poster child for todays abuse of the patent system in an effort not to license invention but to drive competitors out of business?
        spark555
      • Nope

        @spark555
        You won't get me to agree to that. Although they used copyrights and not patents, I remember well the SCO saga, and <a href='http://www.zdnetasia.com/microsoft-sco-fact-and-fiction-39202162.htm'>Microsoft's involvement in funding it</a>.
        Robert Hahn
      • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

        @Robert Hahn Apple is using both "Community Design" and Patents to attack various competitors - to pretend they are not suing based on patents makes you look uninformed.

        And yes, they've gone after people making fake Apple products with the Apple logo on them - I am completely supportive of them on that _trademark_ front.
        spark555
      • Wake up

        @spark555<br>You're not paying attention. I didn't say that Apple wasn't suing on patents. What I said was that Microsoft funded a multi-year copyright extravaganza against IBM and linux. What's worse, their little stalking horse didn't even own the copyrights; it was all bogus. Now don't tell me there's a difference between patents and copyrights. I already know that. Microsoft's intent was to stifle competition through lawsuits. There's no 'poster boy' here except at Microsoft's PR shop and in the scripts they send out to the Munchkins. All these companies file lawsuits, and have for decades.
        Robert Hahn
      • @spark555

        Can't agree at all. Can we at least agree that Google invents nothing and wants to use other companies R&D for free with no reprecutions? Google is the poster child for stealing the work and content of others.
        Bruizer
      • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

        @Robert Hahn Apple has been leading the patent wars for some time ... but I guess if you only read Apple News, you weren't aware of that ;)
        Heenan73
      • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

        @spark555

        If you are going to do so, you at least have the obligation to point out specific patents that you feel that Apple is defending unreasonably. Good luck with that.
        .DeusExMachina.
      • We're all too well aware of who is being pedantic....

        @Robert Hahn

        There is absolutely no doubt who the aggressor is in these cases, and unless you've been on the spacestation for the past year you too will be very aware. So stop acting smug and smart and accep[t what we all know.... Apple have seriously annoyed a significant part of the IT world. Buyers, sellers, manufacturers and I do hope this backfires on them.

        I've got ipad, iphone, android. They all ave their good points, and subsequent technologies will too. By all means protect the hardware and coding.... but no way can you stop a concept from being implemented in another way.
        johnmckay
      • Caldera/Sco rubbish

        @ Robert Hahn

        You apparently didn't even read (or didn't understand) the link you referred to. There's absolutely no evidence that Microsoft or Sun Microsystems, both of whom bought Unix licences from Caldera/Sco, were anything more than passive supporters of Caldera/Sco, and only after Caldera/Sco had already started their legal trolling against Linux.

        The biggest irony is that Caldera would never have been able to buy Sco's Unix assets (and the Sco brand) in the first place if they hadn't prevailed in their earlier legal trolling against Microsoft. Using exactly the same tactics, they bought DR-Dos from Novell in the 90s, and used it to launch a lawsuit against Microsoft. Unfortunately they won that one, but the Linux zealots cheered them on. It's somehow poetic justice that Caldera/Sco's next target was Linux.
        WilErz
    • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

      @brother451

      Apple has had far more suits launched against them than they have launched.

      Samsung and HTC are the only cases Apple initiated.

      Samsung blatantly copied the iPhone and iPad, they have been copying other's products for years, RAZR like Flip phones, N95 like Slide phones, Palm Treo like QWERTY candy bars.

      Nokia initiated proceedings against Apple, Motorola initiated proceedings against Apple, time for you to get off the bandwagon fanboy.
      bannedagain
      • Apple has had far more suits launched against them than they have launched

        @bannedagain That may be true, if a little unlikely. But 90% of them have been defensive or retaliatory; the remainder is companies getting their defense in first. The truth may be unpleasant for Apple Fashionistas - but it's still the truth.
        Heenan73
      • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

        @Heenan73<br><br>MAY be true? It is not like it is all that hard to find out. Funny that you make a demonstrably false accusation in the same paragraph as discussing the concept of "truth".<br>A paragraph where you also feel free to provide statistics you fabricated out of thin air.<br>That the truth is unpleasant may explain your aversion to it.
        .DeusExMachina.
  • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

    @Vidmaster12. I'm jealous. I've seen some of the video and i have to say I'm very impressed with what Microsoft is doing with Windows 8. It's the first thing that makes me think Android could lose dominance. Neither Android nor Apple have what Microsoft is offering with Windows 8.

    I can't believe i'm typing this but... the Microsoft giant may just be poised for a comeback.
    brother451
    • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

      @brother451, What specifically is Windows 8 offering that AAPL and GOOG will not?
      pkhunter
      • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

        @pkhunter
        running two metro apps side by side (aka Courier) and interacting with those two at the same time. No other tablet at the moment can do that.
        Ram U
      • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

        @Rama.NET

        How is that an example of something Apple and Google won't do?
        And FTR, no Windows 8 tablet can do it, either.
        .DeusExMachina.
    • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

      @brother451
      <cite>Neither Android nor Apple have what Microsoft is offering with Windows 8.</cite>
      Right, its what they don't have that makes for a success (with tablets, specifically). Note that especially apple has had success with the tablet, and its a more simple, limited design than even android. So this proves that for tablets, the simpler the better, which I agree with, although I'm personally in the middle with android. I was planning to install ubuntu on the tablet but then decided nah I'm going to keep the tablet simple and use it as intended. So I predict windows will not do well on the ARM tablet, anyway. Of course windows 8 will be on new PCs as usual and do just fine there.
      deathjazz
    • RE: IBM sells Google 1,023 patents for Android legal defense

      @brother451 Currently MS isn't offering Win 8 so from now until the point that it is released there is no possible way that it is offering anything Android and Apple are not.
      non-biased