Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 1st Nov 2013 09:34 UTC

A new front opened today in the patent wars between large technology companies, as a consortium that owns thousands of patents from the Nortel bankruptcy auction filed suit against Google and other manufacturers alleging infringement. Rockstar, which is owned jointly by Apple, Blackberry, Ericsson, Microsoft, and Sony, filed suit in US District Court in Texas. In addition to Google, the consortium has alleged infringement by Asus, HTC, Huawei, LG, Pantech, Samsung, and ZTE.


Since then, as recounted by Wired, Rockstar has been devoted to reverse-engineering the patents and looking for evidence of infringement. "Pretty much anybody out there is infringing," John Veschi, the CEO of Rockstar, told the magazine. "It would be hard for me to envision that there are high-tech companies out there that don't use some of the patents in our portfolio."

I told you Apple and Microsoft were patent trolls. They specifically set up a satellite company that owns nothing but patents, with the sole goal of attacking the competition in the courtroom instead of the market. What a bunch of low-life scum.

I'm surprised by Sony there, though. They use Android themselves.

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RE: Just a slight difference
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 1st Nov 2013 09:54 UTC in reply to "Just a slight difference"
Member since:

The consortium, however, makes no products. They are the patent troll - funded by Apple, Microsoft, and others. This is a common tactic, and it's still patent trolling.

Reply Parent Score: 15

MOS6510 Member since:

It's a common tactic: outsourcing.

All these companies have outsourced the patent investigation and legal actions to a single company.

Reply Parent Score: 1

Fergy Member since:

It's a common tactic: outsourcing.

All these companies have outsourced the patent investigation and legal actions to a single company.

That is a really positive spin on this horrible story.

Reply Parent Score: 9

RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by Nelson on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:29 in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
Nelson Member since:

Its a common, underhanded tactic to avoid counter litigation but patent trolling it is not. That word had a narrow definition that this does not fit.

The Rockstar Consortium actually has former Nortel employees working there and the stakeholders are just the major parties that facilitated the purchase.

That said, I don't really like it when companies set up shell companies like this. Google (and its OEMs) are now in a very precarious situation. These are very capable and dangerous patents.

Some kind of licensing deal will probably have to come of this, hopefully not enough to make Android a non viable option.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RshPL Member since:

This case does share one common trait with casual patent trolling though - the obvious nature of the patents, at least the ones covered by the news. Still, pretty lame even if some of the patents are hardware patents.

Reply Parent Score: 0

bassbeast Member since:

Sorry but you are wrong, if you want to go by that logic then ALL major corps are by default patent trolls since they nearly all have their patents owned by research divisions that don't actually produce anything.

If you want to complain about something complain about the legal and tax systems that make turning a single company into a big convoluted mess pretty much SOP if you don't want to get pounded by taxes or buried in lawsuits. By splitting up the companies like that you can have one part of a company engaged in a legal battle without dragging the entire company into it, hence why they all split up the companies like that.

As for so called patent trolling? Let us not forget that Google left the Motorola patent suits going when they bought it so they don't have clean hands either and unlike NPEs Nortel did spend hundreds of millions in research to produce those patents which they then licensed with their designs, no different from ARM and nvidia on that front.

Reply Parent Score: 4

No it isnt Member since:

Of course you don't shed a tear. You're an Apple fanboi.

Reply Parent Score: 8

cdude Member since:
2008-09-21 has some more acurate background information. Most notable

When the Rockstar Bidco group purchased Nortel’s patents, the U.S. Department of Justice took a look at the deal, as part of a broader investigation into several large technology patent sales. The DoJ was concerned that patent attacks might somehow be used to knock Rockstar’s competitors out of the smartphone or tablet market. But in February, the DoJ closed its investigation, in part because Microsoft and Apple had promised to license many of their core wireless patents under reasonable terms to anyone who needed them.

But the new company — Rockstar Consortium — isn’t bound by the promises that its member companies made, according to Veschi. “We are separate,” he says. “That does not apply to us.”

Reply Parent Score: 9

wocowboy Member since:

No, the consortium makes no products, but other patent trolls are made up simply of groups of lawyers that buy up patents with the sole purpose of bringing lawsuits, never producing products, a completely different thing. This consortium is owned by Microsoft, Apple, Sony, et all. Again, a completely different animal.

Reply Parent Score: 2

bowkota Member since:

How hypocritic of you ignoring the fact that Google bought Motorolla and continued on going litigation against many other companies, while abusing FRAND licenses.
Not surprised...

Reply Parent Score: 2