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Google steps up its legal defense of Android against Nokia and Apple

Google steps up its legal defense of Android against Nokia and Apple
In two moves apparently targeted at putting its legal weight behind the embattled Android manufacturers, which are swamped with lawsuits left and right, Google has stepped up to the rescue.

First off, Google is now trying to be listed as co-defendant with HTC in its patent infringement lawsuit with Nokia. The Finns, in a possession of more than $6 billion worth of mobile related patents, are a formidable opponent, and without Google's help HTC might have to pony up even more in license and royalty fees, just when it is trying to save some cash, like wiggling out of the Beats Audio investment, for example.

We are grabbing our popcorn and waiting for the Google-Nokia patent fight, where El Goog is very likely to counteract with its Motorola patents, which it said were the main reason to buy Moto for $12.5 billion. Well, that, and some manufacturing prowess.

In another related move to defend Android from the lawsuits piling on it, Google has asked the FTC in a 15-page letter to consider Apple's design patents as FRAND, i.e. to be accepted as de facto industry standards, since otherwise Apple can sue anybody with a rectangular phone or tablet that uses sliding to unlock it, which we saw didn't work very well in the UK, for example. Apple caught wind of Google's filing, and sent its own 9-page rebuttal, saying that even if “a proprietary technology becomes quite popular does not transform it into a ‘standard’ subject to the same legal constraints as true standards".

Furthermore, in comments that are very much alluding to Samsung, and its charge to try and make Apple pay through the nose for some 3G-related standards it holds, Apple showed that it will make every effort to try and keep the distinction between standardized and non-standard technology and design patents. As per its General Councel Bruce Sewell:
To enhance their bargaining position, the FRAND patent holders have sought injunctions or other exclusionary remedies — to threaten companies like Apple that have been leaders in developing product-differentiating technology, and to force them to either pay exorbitant royalties or license their product-differentiating technology.

Ouch. And let's not forget that the CEO Tim Cook shares the same vision, as he was more than eloquent to clarify on the matter at the last D10 conference:

No one should be able to get an injunction off a standards-essential patent because the owner of the patent has the responsibility to license it on a fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory manner. And so when somebody comes to you and tries to get some obscene level of money from you for this, they are in essence telling you they are not going to license it because they want to go try to get an injunction and use the court system to do that. In my view, they use it in a way that it wasn’t intended...

And you can always argue about the payment, and there has to be a forum for resolving those disputes. The problem in this industry is if you add up what everybody says the standards-essential patents are worth, no one else could be in the phone business. Competition would be locked out. And so it’s kind of gotten crazy — this is one issue...

There is some of this that is maddening. It’s a waste; it’s a time-suck. However, does it stop innovation? It’s not going to stop us from innovating — no — but it’s overhead. It’s overhead that I wish didn’t exist.

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posted on 23 Jul 2012, 03:41 20

1. crankyd00d (Posts: 191; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

It's really disgusting listening to Cook saying all of that, somebody should slap him and tell him to shut up, 5 minutes after he said that Apple filed another 20 lawsuits /sigh

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 19:44 1

20. joey_sfb (Posts: 6632; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)

I like Steve Job better than Tim Cook. Tim Cook is a hypocrite. Steve Job does not pretend to be a nice guy.

As for Google, they finally honor their words which give me more faith in their products and services.

Google, HTC, Samsung, Acer even Huawei should pull their patent resources together formed another committee that specialize in defending and attacking Apple/Microsoft on the Android legal front. That way manufacturer could just concentrate on innovating on their own respective product free from legal tussle.

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 03:53 5

2. pikapowerize (banned) (Posts: 1869; Member since: 03 May 2012)

nokia owns a lot of patents... so google is in a bad situations, but if motorola's patents could counter attack nokia.. then it is just the question of who's sueing who?

but if google wins and nokia lost... nokia will go down to bankruptcy.. but i hope not... but i really think that android/google has a lot of patents that wasnt registered to their owners... even if they are open, they should really register what they borrow..

that is what firefox wanted to happen.. they dont want to be sued by companies.. they saw the battle of patents between android vs everyone...

i know that rules are rule but apple would you please stop?!

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 04:21 5

3. anywherehome (Posts: 971; Member since: 13 Dec 2011)

people.....wake up and BOYCOTT companies and their products trying stop progress just because they are not able to compete!!!!!!!

https://sites.google com/site/corpsins/
+ Nokia (in fact = Microsoft)

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 05:35 2

4. Dunknown (Posts: 84; Member since: 23 Jul 2012)

I think Nokia should sued the other phone manufacturers of using its stuffs such as bluetooth, wifi 802.11a/b/g/n, micro usb and etc. If NOkia sue them first. Nokia will conquer the phone and get the crown. If there is no Nokia then they will be no wifi or bluetooth. NOkia has been paying billions of euro on research and development and it is used as a free spec by other phone manufacturer. Nokia should really voice up all its patents. So that Samsung, will not get the crown that includes all other phone manufacturer,

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 06:01 3

8. plgladio (Posts: 314; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)

Kiddo, since you like Nokia you can't say that all the top techs are powered by MS's new baby Nokia. That was not powered by Nokia alone and they are not the only company to put more money. Please refer before you post.
Samsung claiming the crown because of the number of phones they make and sell.
Nokia & Apple: crying babies, need someone to help them all time, same like their fans..

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 06:07 6

11. CanYouSeeTheLight (Posts: 1122; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)

By your same retarded logic Google should remove all the Google services from the other platforms and only keep it on Android.. (Google, Gmail, Youtube.

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 05:43 1

5. bobfreking55 (Posts: 866; Member since: 15 Jul 2011)

god! sweet jesus! nokia is a great company, so is google and apple! i all admire them but it feels like I don't know what to believe in anymore. all of them should stop hating and start innovating.

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 05:56

6. plgladio (Posts: 314; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)

A new begining..

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 06:01 1

7. CanYouSeeTheLight (Posts: 1122; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)

"However, does it stop innovation? It’s not going to stop us from innovating — no — but it’s overhead. It’s overhead that I wish didn’t exist." Dear Tim, Apple stopped innovating from the moment Steve Jobs died.

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 06:03

9. Gaurav008 (Posts: 328; Member since: 20 Jul 2012)

let the movie begin..with lots and lots of coke and popcorn.....

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 06:05 7

10. Aeires (unregistered)

If you didn't have Tim Cook's name on that last quote, I would have thought it was from any company Apple is suing. Essentially what he is saying is he feels Apple has enough patents that even if you licensed them, you couldn't make a phone due to the fees. This is exactly why Google is moving to have many of Apple's patents invalidated. Apple is trying to create a monopoly, where only their products can be made with a profit. If you want to make a phone or tablet, go ahead and try, we'll patent you into oblivion.

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 06:43 3

13. bloodline (Posts: 706; Member since: 01 Dec 2011)

Exactly and thats why I hate Apple

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 06:11

12. Gaurav008 (Posts: 328; Member since: 20 Jul 2012)

true..well said..

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 07:24 1

14. MartyK (Posts: 950; Member since: 11 Apr 2012)

Clash of the Titans ( MsNokia vs G-Moto).

IN since Motorola (DynaTAC 8000X) been around longer then Nokia, I think G-Moto will win this battle.

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 07:49 3

15. -box- (Posts: 3991; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)

I'm all for apple's design patents to be invalidated. Rectangles with rounded edges have been around a long time, from electronics to appliances to interior home design to vehicles, etc, etc. The concept of sliding to unlock something has been around since bolt-based physical locks. All the TV, refrigerator, radio, and other electronic companies didn't try to sue each other into oblivion because each knew that the general shape was universal. They may have taken another to task for having similar details in their designs, like handle design, or button layout and shape, stuff that set a brand or model apart from its peers. The The only design patent I would say apple might have a case for is the silly round button in the middle lower bezel in portrait mode

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 07:50 1

16. satydesh (Posts: 71; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)

nokia and microsofts paternership is deals with cross patent.Visually nokia owns more patents in hardware.And microsoft owns in softwares.this means there is fight for your right for google which will lead patent cross agreement with some $$$

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 07:53

17. -box- (Posts: 3991; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)

As for google vs Nokia, it surprises me that two pioneering companies like Nokia and Motorola aren't already making enough money on royalties alone to subsidize the rest if the company. We wouldn't have cell phones without those two, and they've been very generous with the use of their patents so far, and while it is awkward having an entity that has let others play with its stuff for cheap or free ask for more money, it isn't unreasonable, as economies of scale have exponentially changed in the years since such agreements were made.
It's like the kids who have the toys on the playground. They brought them, so while they may be nice with sharing, they're technically still theirs

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 08:48

18. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)

' consider Apple's design patents as FRAND, i.e. to be accepted as de facto industry standards, since otherwise Apple can sue anybody with a rectangular phone or tablet that uses sliding to unlock it.'

Exactly what APPLE is doing, and they are not the first to come out with a tablet or phone of the same shape.....

I was laughing to myself when I saw the word 'innovation' and APPLE in the same sentence. Wow, the 4GS phone will look alot like the 4S and 4 and offer LTE 4G and a 4 inch screen - wow, talk about innovation....

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 14:56

19. BattleBrat (Posts: 1476; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)

I wish microsoft would get the hint that noone is using their mobile OS and GET THE HELL OUT! I played with an HTC Titan (a windows phone) and I liked it very much, but it didn't really bring anything or do anything better than iOS or Android. Android is feature packed, open (and since gingerbread stable, and since JB smooth, iOS only has apps over Android now) and iOS is...... iOS (shrugs) and WP is too similar to iOS, too locked down, to limited. I feel that a true windows phone should be android, I mean android is set up like a desktop os, more so than anyone else at least...

posted on 23 Jul 2012, 21:48

21. parkwaydr (Posts: 572; Member since: 07 Sep 2011)

it has boiled down to the de facto highschool cheerleading intra squad bs.

geesh, i wish my job paid me that much to make a fool out of my self, but alas, i have to do it for free, sad.

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