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Apple and Google's Motorola Unit End Patent War 46

Posted by Soulskill
from the lawyers-everywhere-in-mourning dept.
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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Apple and Google's Motorola Unit End Patent War

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  • Tune in Next Week (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mfh (56) on Friday May 16, 2014 @09:16PM (#47022973) Homepage Journal

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

    • by Z00L00K (682162)

      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.

      • 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.
    • yacht builders need customers
  • Well that's that (Score:3, Insightful)

    by symbolset (646467) * on Friday May 16, 2014 @09:20PM (#47022987) Journal
    Oh wait. We still have Microsoft and their proxies trying to prevent the future.
  • not participating allows the hardware side of this patent war to continue. Apple is hardware/software so it seems uneven without Samsung joining
  • by TFoo (678732) on Friday May 16, 2014 @09:30PM (#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.
    • by tepples (727027)

      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.

      • 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!

      • Apple also never paid the fair and reasonable rates.

    • by SuperKendall (25149) on Friday May 16, 2014 @10:30PM (#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 (Score:4, Insightful)

        by tuppe666 (904118) on Saturday May 17, 2014 @05:47AM (#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.

        • 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.

      • 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?

    • by jonwil (467024)

      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.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        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 d

  • Patent fixing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 16, 2014 @09:32PM (#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.

  • by Paradise Pete (33184) on Friday May 16, 2014 @09:42PM (#47023067) Journal
    As if thousands of patent lawyers suddenly cried out in terror.
    • by Z00L00K (682162)

      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.

  • by Citizen of Earth (569446) on Friday May 16, 2014 @09:48PM (#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.
  • I suspect it settled because you can't demand unreasonable royalties for SEPs & Moto figured that was where it was going.

  • 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?

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