EU warns Motorola in patent spat with Apple

The European Commission has sent Motorola, a division of Google, a formal list of complaints over how it conducts its patent litigation and subsequent enforcement.

The EU said in a statement today that Motorola had been informed of its allegations -- what is known as a formal "statement of objections" -- claiming that the smartphone maker had abused its market position by seeking and enforcing a patent-related injunction against Apple.

The iPhone and iPad maker was told by a court in Germany that it must stop using a networking patent relating to GPRS technology. But Motorola … Read more

FTC, EU to postpone Google antitrust decisions, report says

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission's final decision on its 20-month long antitrust probe of the search giant will be delayed until next year, Bloomberg reported late yesterday after speaking with unnamed sources.

The results of the probe were expected to be announced this week.

The Mountain View, Calif.-based company has been in talks with the FTC over the past two weeks, and according to Bloomberg, Google has been preparing a letter with voluntary changes to try to end the FTC's investigation without it resulting in a formal settlement or eventual lawsuit.

In addition, the FTC has … Read more

Samsung drops Apple ban request in Europe

Samsung Electronics has withdrawn its requests to ban Apple products in several European countries, citing its wish to "protect consumer choice."

The Korean smartphone maker will drop its requests in Germany, the U.K., France, Italy and the Netherlands, according to the Verge, which got a statement from the company earlier today.

Foss Patents legal consultant Florian Mueller noted that Samsung never actually mentioned lawsuit in the statement, and that the company is still suing for compensation. Samsung has confirmed that it is still pursuing compensation.

Samsung had alleged that Apple had violated the use of its patents, … Read more

Microsoft, Motorola finish arguments in patent trial

Oral arguments in the patent trial between Microsoft and Motorola Mobility wrapped up today, with perhaps billions of dollars in patent royalties at stake.

The case, which centers how much the software giant should pay the wireless technology company to use its patents, concluded after six days of testimony. U.S. District Judge James Robart has set a deadline of December 14 for both sides to deliver their closing arguments in the form of post-trial briefs. Robart is expected to render his decision in the spring of 2013.

Motorola holds patents that are part of the H.264 video and … Read more

Google considers mobile patent antitrust settlement, report says

Google is considering a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission over the agency's claim that the search giant violated antitrust law when it didn't grant patent licenses to some of its mobile competitors, The Wall Street Journal reported today.

An unnamed source told the Journal that Google is weighing whether or not it should settle.

When asked for comment on a possible settlement, a Google spokeswoman said only:

"We take our commitments to license on fair, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory terms very seriously and are happy to answer any questions [from the FTC]."

CNET has contacted the … Read more

Apple scores courtroom wins in Motorola FRAND case

While most of the patent litigation attention is currently focused on Apple's ongoing lawsuit against Samsung, the iPhone maker has scored some pretrial summary judgments in a Wisconsin case against Motorola Mobility over fair patent licensing terms.

Apple sued Motorola Mobility in March 2011 after Motorola sought to collect 2.25 percent of all net sales on iOS products that use essential industry standard patents. Companies that hold patents deemed to be industry essential are expected to offer them to companies that need them under licensing terms that are fair, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory (FRAND). However, Apple accused Motorola of … Read more

Apple, Google appeal Posner's toss-out of patent case

Apple and Google have appealed a ruling by U.S. Circuit Judge Richard Posner that flat-out dismissed an iOS and Android-related patent case between the two companies.

Both tech giants filed appeal notices yesterday regarding the June 22 ruling, Bloomberg reported. Posner had canceled a jury trial over the tit-for-tat infringement claims, saying neither company had been able to prove damages and that neither would be allowed to refile claims in this particular case, which has been lurching along in the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Illinois (Chicago).

The two companies have been duking it out … Read more

Microsoft, Motorola: FRAND first, then patent disputes

Microsoft and Motorola Mobility, which is now owned by Google, have agreed to set aside several patent disputes until a U.S. court has ruled on their FRAND (fair, reasonable and nondiscriminatory) license dispute, set to be heard in November.

The agreement was first picked up by Foss Patents blogger Florian Mueller. Microsoft alleged in the case that Motorola had not lived up to its FRAND obligation for patents essential to the video codec H.264 standard and the IEEE 802.11 Wi-Fi standard. Microsoft said that Motorola's offer for the license of those patents was "blatantly unreasonable.&… Read more

ITC delays ruling on U.S. ban of Xbox

It looks like the Xbox won't be banned from the U.S. just yet.

The U.S. International Trade Commission is putting off a ruling on whether sales of the gaming console should be prohibited in the states owing to infringement of patents held by Google and its Motorola Mobility unit, Reuters reports.

In late May, an ITC judge recommended the ban, based on his ruling that the Xbox infringes patents regarding wireless Net connectivity, video compression, and other technologies. The ITC had been expected to release a decision on the proposed ban in August but has instead sent … Read more

FTC investigating Google over Motorola patents

The Federal Trade Commission is investigating whether Google's Motorola Mobility unit is improperly blocking access to industry-standard technology that should be licensed to competitors according to traditional industry and legal practice.

A source says Google has been served by the FTC with a civil investigative demand -- similar to a subpoena. The news was reported earlier by Bloomberg, which said the government is also seeking information from Apple and Microsoft.

The issue involves so-called frand patents -- "fair, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory" -- that cover technology essential to the smooth operation of an industry. As CNET's Roger … Read more