Apple and Google looking to settle patent war

Both companies look to arbitration to solve their differences

According to a court filing obtained by Bloomberg, Apple and Google are considering arbitration in their legal battle over mobile technology patents. Both companies are trading proposals on a licensing agreement over essential smartphone patents. The possibility has sprung out of the ongoing dispute (Apple Inc. v. Motorola Mobility Inc., 11cv178, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin) between Apple and Google subsidiary Motorola Mobility.

“Apple is also interested in resolving its dispute with Motorola completely and agrees that arbitration may be the best vehicle to resolve the parties' dispute,” Apple said in the filing.

“We have long sought a path to resolving patent issues and we welcome the chance to build on the constructive dialogue between our companies,” Google General Counsel Kent Walker said in a filed letter to Apple. “While we prefer to seek a framework for a global (rather than piecemeal) resolution that addresses all of our patent disputes, we are committed to reaching agreement on a license for our respective standard-essential patents.”

“Apple's goal has always been to find a mutual and transparent process to resolve this dispute on terms that are fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory without the threat or taint of exclusionary remedies,” Apple General Counsel Bruce Sewell said in a letter to Google.

An agreement could end Apple's lawsuits against other Android hardware vendors. Apple and Android vendor HTC recently reached a 10-year patent licensing agreement.

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Latest comments (7)

Peter Dwyer Games Designer/Developer 5 years ago
First sensible thing either has done in a long while. I suspect though that this is more to do with the ordinary man in the street getting very fed up of these court cases basically stifling innovation. Bombard a man enough with the info and it starts to sink in!

If this had continued any longer I'm fairly certain that both companies would have ground to a halt as they would have had to fight a court case for every device they put out. I could just imagine the next Apple or Google conference starting with the words

"Barring any litigation outcomes we should be releasing the next new iPad in the coming months...unless it get's banned...but, er this is what it would have looked like!"


I should add that my personal take on this is that it is long past time that the US government stepped in and basically overhauled the patent system. Clearly the staff in the patent office are either inept or just plain corrupt. I talk of course about the granting of patents recently for page turn animations and rounded rectangles. Either of which has so much prior use (read dawn of man!) that to have even considered granting them should have gotten the individual fired on the spot!

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Peter Dwyer on 19th November 2012 8:20am

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gi biz ;, 5 years ago
I should add that my personal take on this is that it is long past time that the US government stepped in and basically overhauled the patent system.
In many fields the US are in a leading position compared to Europe, but for many other things they are stuck in the middle age. I'm no lawyer but I think they should do something radical to their legal system.
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John Bye Lead Designer, Future Games of London5 years ago
Presumably this is a result of the recent court case Apple lost in the US, where a judge refused to force Motorola to lower the rates they were asking Apple to pay to use their FRAND patents, rather than a change of policy?
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Craig Page El Presidente, Awesome Enterprises5 years ago
That's too bad, I was really hoping for their patent war to be settled on the battlefield.
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Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant 5 years ago
Apple now spend more on litigation than on research and development.
Utterly ridiculous.
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John Bye Lead Designer, Future Games of London5 years ago
For once I actually agree with Bruce. The patent system was created to protect innovation, now it's destroying it.
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game5 years ago
One reason Google bought Motorola was a patent library that would help fight back against Apple and MS. To me this seems like it may be working.
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