Apple and Motorola Mobility discussed a patent-licensing agreement in late 2011, according to a new report. However, with no agreement in place, the courtroom fight continues.
Motorola Mobility discussed a patent licensing agreement in late 2011,
according to Bloomberg
outlet drew its information from a document issued by the European Commission
, the European Unions
antitrust body. From the information available to the Commission, this option
envisaged a cross-license possibly to the benefit of all Android OEMs but also
with mutual carve-outs, read a section of that document.
is fuzzier on whether the discussions between Apple and Motorola Mobility are
continuing, or stalled over some key point. In the very specific context of the
two companies' legal battle in Germany, the Commission suggested in the
document that Google had given Motorola Mobility the go-ahead to engage in some
sort of "commercially acceptable" settlement. But the outcome of
talks over a broad global settlement remains unclear.
information proves accurate, it provides an interesting counterpoint of sorts
to the two companies very public battles. In October 2010, Motorola sued Apple
for allegedly violating its patents; a month later, Apple returned the favor
with a lawsuit claiming that Motorola infringed on intellectual property
related to multi-touch and other screen technologies.
antagonism toward Motorola is part of its larger war against Google Android,
which former CEO Steve Jobs felt stole key elements from iOS. In a meeting with
former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, Jobs reportedly refused to accept any sort of
Android-related payout. I dont want your money, he said, according to Walter
Isaacsons best-selling biography
of Jobs. If you offer me
$5 billion, I wont want it. Ive got plenty of money. I want you to stop using
our ideas in Android, thats all I want.
to acquire Motorola in August 2011, in what many pundits saw as a bid to
solidify its patent portfolio against outside attacks. However, that hasnt
halted the legal back-and-forth between its new subsidiary and Cupertino, which
carried on with the lawsuits even after Jobs death from cancer in October
Apple recently won a victory over Motorola that allowed it to keep selling the
iPhone and iPad online, having made an offer for patent-licensing terms that
the court found agreeable. According to patent expert Florian Mueller
Motorola could turn down that potential agreement only at the risk of a
potential antitrust violation, with penalties, from the European Commission.
federal judge in Chicago ruled March 5
that Motorola and Google must give
Apple information relevant to the development of the Google Android operating
and Motorola eventually settle their issues in court, Android and iOS continue
to battle for market supremacy in smartphones and tablets. Although Apples
iPad handily dominates the tablet market, the iPhone faces a tougher battle
against the ever-growing array of Android handsets on store shelves.
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