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Apple and Google's Motorola Unit End Patent War

Soulskill posted about 4 months ago | from the lawyers-everywhere-in-mourning dept.

Patents 46

An anonymous reader writes "Reuters reports that Apple and Google's Motorola Mobility unit are settling all patent lawsuits over smartphone tech. The settlement 'does not include a cross license to their respective patents,' and the companies will work together for patent reform. According to Reuters, 'The two companies informed a federal appeals court in Washington that the cases should be dismissed, according to filings on Friday. However, the deal does not appear to apply to Apple's litigation against Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, as no dismissal notices were filed in those cases. The most high-profile case between Apple and Motorola began in 2010. Motorola accused Apple of infringing several patents, including one essential to how cell phones operate on a 3G network, while Apple said Motorola violated its patents to certain smartphone features.'"

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Tune in Next Week (3, Interesting)

mfh (56) | about 4 months ago | (#47022973)

For another stupid patent beef. Let's burn more money because lawyers need yachts, right?

Re:Tune in Next Week (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | about 4 months ago | (#47023287)

Yet another indication of the protectionism that the US has. It's time to invalidate all current patents, clean out the current patent system and start over with a new system that is a lot more strict than the current system.

Re:Tune in Next Week (2)

flyingfsck (986395) | about 4 months ago | (#47024481)

If you clean out the system, then when it is started up again, everything that was patented before will be patented again and these patents will again be valid for goodness knows how many years. So, maybe think again, since it is not so simple.

Re:Tune in Next Week (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | about 4 months ago | (#47025079)

It depends on the rules that you set up when restarting.

yachts (1)

NotQuiteReal (608241) | about 4 months ago | (#47023403)

yacht builders need customers

Re:yachts (1)

Gavagai80 (1275204) | about 4 months ago | (#47023649)

Well they won't need customers anymore if they patent the propeller.

Re:Tune in Next Week (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47062779)

Yes, you are right.

Regards,
Ashok Saini
GoogleEstuff [googleestuff.com]

Without even reading the article. (-1, Troll)

The RoboNerd (551256) | about 4 months ago | (#47022981)

I can smell Apple's hypocrisy.

Re: Without even reading your comment (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47024041)

I can smell your irrational hate and ignorance.

Well that's that (3, Insightful)

symbolset (646467) | about 4 months ago | (#47022987)

Oh wait. We still have Microsoft and their proxies trying to prevent the future.

Samsung? (1)

Mike Syposs (3646881) | about 4 months ago | (#47023019)

not participating allows the hardware side of this patent war to continue. Apple is hardware/software so it seems uneven without Samsung joining

That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (3, Insightful)

TFoo (678732) | about 4 months ago | (#47023023)

Moto's 3G and radio patents had real teeth. Heck, some of them might be actual, real, inventions....as opposed to the drivel that Apple's been flogging.

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (0)

tepples (727027) | about 4 months ago | (#47023105)

Moto's 3G and radio patents had real teeth.

But these patents were also licensed to the public under a uniform-royalty arrangement (sometimes called "FRAND") as a condition of being included in cellular standards. Apple never agreed to any such uniform-royalty arrangement.

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (0)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | about 4 months ago | (#47023279)

Moto's 3G and radio patents had real teeth.

But these patents were also licensed to the public under a uniform-royalty arrangement (sometimes called "FRAND") as a condition of being included in cellular standards. Apple never agreed to any such uniform-royalty arrangement.

Yeah, just because YOU agreed not to be a dick, doesn't mean WE surrender OUR right to be dicks! Think Different! Bend Over!

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 4 months ago | (#47023717)

Apple also never paid the fair and reasonable rates.

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47023167)

That last real innovation that happened in cell phones was the palm treo and the early blackberries. Everything else has been modest upgrades.

That had zero to do with settlement (4, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 4 months ago | (#47023203)

Moto's 3G and radio patents had real teeth.

We already knew from a previous court ruling that they were not worth a hill of beans.

The REAL reason the battle is finally over is because Jobs is gone, and Cook is not a "nuclear option" kind of guy. Cook just wants to chill and make billions of dollars per day or whatever. He's the ultimate supply chain nerd that probably hated dealing with legal crap all the time.

People keep taking about Jobs being gone being all bad. But they forget there are real silver linings like this patent settlement that probably would not happen if Jobs were still alive, since he took the copying issue personally.

Steve Jobs is dead (3, Insightful)

tuppe666 (904118) | about 4 months ago | (#47024443)

The REAL reason the battle is finally over is because Jobs is gone

Really THIS got modded insightful. Its down to the whims of CEOs. Jobs died October 5, 2011...get over it.

This case ended like all cases of its kind do. The money; PR; time; strength of their case..some expensive advisers weighed up the pros and cons and decided to call it a draw. the fact that "Judge Richard Posner dismissed it in 2012 shortly before trial, saying neither company had sufficient evidence to prove its case" kind of points in that direction.

Re:Steve Jobs is dead (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 4 months ago | (#47025785)

Really THIS got modded insightful.

Because the truth is insightful; get over it.

Jobs died October 5, 2011

It takes a long time to wind down a big suit and come to an agreement.

Re:That had zero to do with settlement (1)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about 4 months ago | (#47026015)

I agree that Cook has a cooler head than Jobs did, but I also think that this change is likely more because Google won't be owning Motorola for much longer, and less because Cook's management style is different from what Jobs' was. Motorola was always just a proxy war. With the proxy no longer being supported by the superpower that was behind it, why bother attacking it?

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47023587)

Moto's 3G and radio patents had real teeth. Heck, some of them might be actual, real, inventions....as opposed to the drivel that Apple's been flogging.

If Moto's patents had real teeth, but Apple's patents are drivel, then why did Moto/Google settle? Shouldn't they have gone for the kill against Apple?

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 4 months ago | (#47023743)

Google aren't in the mobile game to sell hardware.
Every phone that's come out of Motorola since the takeover has been low-margin.
They're in it for the software and the data it can collect.

If there is no competition, they'll get in a world of hurt with antitrust regulation.
Without Apple and their iPhones, Google risks regulation. It'll turn in to the Microsoft/Internet Explorer shit all over again.

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (1)

jonwil (467024) | about 4 months ago | (#47024287)

Considering that Motorola basically INVENTED the cellphone with the original StarTac/DynaTac/MicroTac (and in fact was granted the patents for it way back when) it wouldn't surprise me if Motorola owned 3G patents that were genuinely innovative.

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47024363)

The company that invented the technology is InterDigital Communications (known as International Mobile Machines - IMM - back in the early days). They came up with the combination of low bit rate voice coding, digital RF modulation and demodulation, TDMA (allowing voice and data in the same endpoint), and everything else you need to make it work in what's known as a "Rayleigh fading channel" (i.e., a real world radio environment), back when Motorola said it couldn't be done. IMM demonstrated their fully digital prototype as a working mobile system in 1985, about the time Marty Cooper was showing off his analog-based Motorola brick phone.

IMM/IDCC still exist. They do basic, original R they license their technology under FRAND terms. They are not a patent troll.

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47024371)

"They do basic, original Research and Development; the license their technology under FRAND terms..."

Stupid Slashdot can't handle an ampersand. (R ampersand D)

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47024593)

Problem here is that almost everyone except Apple have FRAND patents as their main weapon, and this is pretty much useless against Apple's injuction seeking strategy as they have a right to license those under affordable terms. Although even Apple's strategy is failing because courts correctly recognized that trying to bann products based on a couple of silly UI patents and similar look is anti-competitive practice.

Jobs came up with something that set new standards, but it doesn't mean that he should have a monopoly on everything similar (especially as Apple built upon work by many others). After all it is no rocket science and intuitively obvious interface once you get your hands on it.

Re:That's the REAL reason Google bought Moto (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47062787)

Yes, you are right.
Moto-G and Moto-E are good Phones.

Regards,
Ashok Saini
GoogleEstuff [googleestuff.com]

Patent fixing (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47023035)

Now they won't sue each other, just everyone else. It seems like there is a big existing group here that is becoming harder and harder to launch new competition against (they will both sue you...). You basically can't make smart phones unless you are in the club, and they won't let you in. This is bad for the market place from a consumer perspective, and from the perspective of all other companies. They have formed a trust and we don't have Theodore Roosevelt around anymore to bust it.

Re:Patent fixing (2)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 4 months ago | (#47023745)

When was the last time Google sued anyone but Apple?

Re:Patent fixing (1)

swillden (191260) | about 4 months ago | (#47028291)

Now they won't sue each other, just everyone else.

Google doesn't file patent lawsuits, except in self-defense.

I feel a disturbance (5, Funny)

Paradise Pete (33184) | about 4 months ago | (#47023067)

As if thousands of patent lawyers suddenly cried out in terror.

Re:I feel a disturbance (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | about 4 months ago | (#47023307)

No, not yet. Samsung is still around.

I just wonder what would happen if suddenly the creditors in Asia would call in the debts on the US and state that the debts may be prolonged only if the patent system is cleaned up.

Re:I feel a disturbance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47023863)

I just wonder what would happen if suddenly the creditors in Asia would call in the debts on the US and state that the debts may be prolonged only if the patent system is cleaned up.

Are you aware of any debts to "creditors in Asia" that aren't bonds with a specified maturation date? Lets say there were... what would happen is the massive printing of money resulting in the devaluation of those very dollars being used to pay back the creditors. Remember these loans were in usd and usd will be used to pay it off whether they have to inflate to the moon or not. Lets say though that the us wanted to actually pay them back without devaluing the currency. End the farm subsidies and start selling food to countries all over the world within two years we'd pay off our debt and end any actual starving caused by true famine and not political conditions.

American companies, American juries (4, Insightful)

Citizen of Earth (569446) | about 4 months ago | (#47023097)

Guess Apple didn't want to take another American company to court. It would lose the home-country advantage its trivial patents had against Samsung.

Couldn't be because of SEPs? (0)

BoRegardless (721219) | about 4 months ago | (#47023211)

I suspect it settled because you can't demand unreasonable royalties for SEPs & Moto figured that was where it was going.

TV Cable Chaper ??? Bankruptcy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47023233)

Cable vs Silicon Valley Entrepreneurs 3 2 1 ...

Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47023247)

The Republicans will never allow this to happen. They love how their laws have ruined innovation in the US and have destroyed our tech industry. After all, if they didn't destroy us, what else would their kind have to whine about. I know my boss that is one of those CONservatives constantly celebrates stupid, wasteful patent lawsuits. Even the small company I work for has put seven businesses that employed (as a wild guess) more than four hundred people. Management here high-fived each other and had a BBW every time they put people out of work to starve. That is what their kind lives for.

Re:Bullshit (1)

Farmer Tim (530755) | about 4 months ago | (#47023425)

Management here high-fived each other and had a BBW every time they put people out of work to starve.

Better than a GILF, I guess...

Correction (1, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 4 months ago | (#47023623)

The Republicans will never allow this to happen. They love how their laws have ruined innovation in the US

You misspelled "Democrat".

But really the word you should have used is "statist", which can be found in both Democrat and Republicn camps. The reason you keep voting for failure is that you've not discerned that candidates matter more than party.

Rolling On Floor Suing (1)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about 4 months ago | (#47023251)

The settlement 'does not include a cross license to their respective patents,' and the companies will "work together" for "patent reform".

scare quotes mine...

So, sort of like Germany and Great Britain after WW1, then huh?

The Republicans would never allow this to happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47023293)

It would hurt Monsanto, and with their agreement with that evil empire to help do whatever they can to help them shove their toxic genetically corrupted food down our throats, they will never allow the patent system to be weakened like this. Expect them to create several false flag operations to recreate the previous situation that helped the people that are sponsoring the Republicans.

Re:The Republicans would never allow this to happe (1)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about 4 months ago | (#47023351)

Sir. I am a Koch Brother (tm) and I take great offense in your
description of a web of conspiracies not even mentioning the word OIL.

Maybe Apple Is Starting To Feel (1)

zenlessyank (748553) | about 4 months ago | (#47023311)

the pocket bottoms. Less Americans can afford shiny toys. And let's face it, it is time for some karma for all things fruity.

Another dumbdroid moron ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47028565)

Yeah ... the company making 80% of the money in the market an consistently selling more every year is "stating to feel the pocket bottoms".

Dumbdroids alwyas prove why Android fans are considered the dumbest in the world.

Re:Another dumbdroid moron ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47029627)

You're a piece of shit. But, you knew this already.

The Final Verdict: Steve Jobs failed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47029949)

"Our lawsuit is saying, 'Google you f***ing ripped off the iPhone, wholesale ripped us off. I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple's $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong. I'm going to destroy Android, because it's a stolen product."

Since Apple and Google settled, and Android is not destroyed, Steve Jobs failed.

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