Google has sold Motorola Mobility to Lenovo for $2.91B, and keeps most of the patents in their portfolio while Lenovo gets 2,000 patents. Google may lose money on this deal but the Android ecosystem benefits.
A networking hardware vendor based in Austin, Texas says it's going to pursue royalties on the implementation of the TCP/IP set of protocols. Formerly known as Dellor, KCIR Networks acquired Nett Labs in 1997, acquiring this patent into the bargain. The patent claim was filed in 1975, but Nett Labs never pursued royalties.
Google is promising not to take legal action against any party using pledged patents for open source or free software “unless first attacked.”
Google has obtained a license for any algorithm that may be essential to VP8 and MPEG LA has a patent for it. Google has the option to sublicense VP8 royalty-free to third party implementers, opening the way for wide adoption of the VP8 codec.
The H.265 codec standard, the successor of H.264, has been approved, promising support for 8k UHD and lower bandwidth, but the patent issues plaguing H.264 remain.
Last month, Judge Paul Grewal ordered the Oracle and Google to attempt to negotiate a settlement. Google offered a $2.8 million settlement on condition that Oracle can prove patent infringement. However, Oracle rejected that offer as too low, so the case will go to court on the 16th April.
On 18th January, wikipedia.or among other estimated 10,000 web sites stopped their service in order to protest against the US legislation planning to endorse SOPA and PIPA. Software engineers might think, that they are not affected by the legislation, especially if they are outside the U.S., but considering Big Data, Cloud Computing and other trends this could be a rather naive perspective.
In a recent interview with The San Francisco Chronicle the patent counsel of Google, Tim Porter, claims the patent system itself is broken. Patent offices worldwide have been increasingly granting protection to “innovations” that are not innovative. The IT Industry is currently facing a series of patent trials which some large corporates seem to leverage as weapons for attacking competitors.
Patents are quite often in the news these days, most notably the ones related to smart phone vendors like HTC, Samsung, Google and Apple. This also holds for the rather emotional and controversial discussion about software patents which some consider as a means to ensure innovation and others as a kind of weapon. Do software patents cause more harm than good, or vice versa?
The Linux-based phone, OpenMoko is currently in a patent dispute with Sisvel, the Italian patent holding firm known for its aggressive enforcement of MPEG patents.
Firestar Software has filed a patent claim against Red Hat for Hibernate 3 allegedly infringing on a patent covering O/R mapping. Firestar, who has not released it's ObjectSpark O/R product since 2003 claims that it "has suffered and will continue to suffer substantial damages."