Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 15th Aug 2011 12:04 UTC
Google Okay once again I'm breaking my own one-week time-off from OSNews due to, you know, taking a break and being too busy with other things, but this one is big - very big. Also, only the second time in OSNews history we've used the 'breaking'-tag. Google has just announced it is going to buy Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion (more here). While providing Google with a dedicated mobile phone business, it also gives Google ownership of one of the most valuable mobile technology patent portfolios in existence. Update: Responses from the Android ecosystem are positive. HTC: "We welcome the news of today's acquisition, which demonstrates that Google is deeply committed to defending Android, its partners, and the entire ecosystem." Sony Ericsson & LG: "We welcome Google's commitment to defending Android and its partners."
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Awesome
by Aragorn992 on Mon 15th Aug 2011 14:22 UTC
Aragorn992
Member since:
2007-05-27

Is Motorolas patent portfolio really big enough to discourage patent attacks on Google/Android (from Apple, MS, etc)? Id really like to hear the opinion of some people who know more about this than me?.. If so, great news!

Reply Score: 1

RE: Awesome
by Soulbender on Mon 15th Aug 2011 14:53 in reply to "Awesome"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Motorola has been making phone hardware and software since forever, at least in comparison to MS and Apple. It's pretty much a given that they'll have a considerably larger patent portfolio.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Awesome
by _txf_ on Mon 15th Aug 2011 15:05 in reply to "RE: Awesome"
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

Motorola has been making phone hardware and software since forever, at least in comparison to MS and Apple. It's pretty much a given that they'll have a considerably larger patent portfolio.


Yeah. And unlike those others they Have a ton of mobile hardware patents.

AFAIK the majority of patents that Apple and MS are using as a club are software patents.

Particularly Apple as a hardware company, really ought to have hardware patents. It is strange that they seldom use hardware as a club. This means that :

a) They have not designed anything novel on the hardware side
b) They are holding those back for some reason.

I think that a) is the more likely option.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Awesome
by Lennie on Mon 15th Aug 2011 15:41 in reply to "RE: Awesome"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

Actually a researcher from Motorola invented the cellphone.

My guess is, it is mostly just a more portal version of the carphone.

Edited 2011-08-15 15:47 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Awesome
by Not2Sure on Mon 15th Aug 2011 20:36 in reply to "RE: Awesome"
Not2Sure Member since:
2009-12-07

Motorola has been making phone hardware and software since forever, at least in comparison to MS and Apple. It's pretty much a given that they'll have a considerably larger patent portfolio.


I'd suggest you maybe need to wait a little bit. A larger portfolio is not necessarily a stronger portfolio in the patent world.

If it was as strong a portfolio as everyone wants to assume, MS and APPL probably would not have been so quick to file the patent infringment claims they already have against MMI wrt Android. I'm guessing their strategy involved looking at MMI holdings indepth prior to proceeding to guage its impact on their business.

Who knows, but I'm guessing neither would start a war with a well-armed enemy. That hasn't exactly been their history.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Awesome
by El_Exigente on Sat 20th Aug 2011 07:37 in reply to "RE: Awesome"
El_Exigente Member since:
2007-01-08

"Motorola has been making phone hardware and software since forever..."

"Since forever" is a long time. Perhaps some of their best patents have expired...

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: Awesome
by bitwelder on Mon 15th Aug 2011 15:13 in reply to "Awesome"
bitwelder Member since:
2010-04-27

Bryce Elder of FT/alphaville reports: "I'd be more interested in Motorola Mobility's patent portfolio. It has 24,500 patents, including 15,200 for handsets and another 6,200 for cornerstone technologies such as 3G, 802.11 (ie. wifi) and MPEG-4 (ie. video)."

That should give some leverage in the future patent wars.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[2]: Awesome
by pgeorgi on Mon 15th Aug 2011 15:30 in reply to "RE: Awesome"
pgeorgi Member since:
2010-02-18

and MPEG-4 (ie. video).

I wonder if that helps fixing the WebM issue en passant.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Awesome
by KLU9 on Mon 15th Aug 2011 16:36 in reply to "RE: Awesome"
KLU9 Member since:
2006-12-06

Ah, finally some info on what patents Motorola *Mobility* hold, as opposed to just references to 'Motorola' in general. Thank you.

I would have imagined a lot of important patents stayed with Motorola *Solutions*, but if they did go to M.Mobility, then good for Google.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Awesome
by Not2Sure on Mon 15th Aug 2011 20:13 in reply to "RE: Awesome"
Not2Sure Member since:
2009-12-07

Bryce Elder of FT/alphaville reports: "I'd be more interested in Motorola Mobility's patent portfolio. It has 24,500 patents, including 15,200 for handsets and another 6,200 for cornerstone technologies such as 3G, 802.11 (ie. wifi) and MPEG-4 (ie. video)."

That should give some leverage in the future patent wars.


Seeing as how MS and APPL have already filed infringment claims against MMI, I seriously doubt they considered it a threat deterrent. I fail to see how Google owning the same weaker portfolio makes it any stronger overnight.

This whole announcement is alot of fanboi PR spin and hype.

1) Motorola is a hardware OEM whose market share has been on a steady dramatic decline and industry analysts were writing its epitaph just a few years ago. 1 or 2 profitable quarters does not erase a track record of diminished quality and problems that spans a decade.

2) Google, a software company with an extremely poor track record of managing consumer hardware experience (see Nexus One, lolz) is purchasing one to "bolt on" to its existing corporate structure. Yeah, that has a history of working well.

3) People who think the other Android licensees are happy about this really need to think 30 seconds. The "statements" from so-called competitors in support of this acquisition are so closely-worded it appears they all "voluntarily" put out a joint press release. That is fairly creepy and should raise eyebrows at the DOJ.

4) If you think Google is not going to favor its own hardware over that of licensees you're being naive. Android is now on the same path as Symbian.

On the plus side, Google is paying $12.5 billion for MMI, Microsoft paid $8.5 billion for Skype. Go figure.

Reply Parent Score: 1