If you thought Google was going to take the stampede of Android lawsuits and patent trolling lying down, you thought wrong. Even though the company lost the Nortel patent bid to Microsoft, Apple and others, there are still a lot of companies out there that can be acquired for the same purpose.
“There are a lot of phenomenal portfolios for sale. Assuming they were willing to spend at least the $900 million of their initial offer to achieve the result they were after, they’re going to get there,” explains Dean Becker, chief executive officer of ICAP Patent Brokerage. Simply put, Google will certainly acquire other companies to beef up its patent war chest.
In order to do so, the company is currently looking to hire a team of patent lawyers and experts that will be responsible for “patent-related protection, licensing, dispute resolution (pre-litigation and litigation), acquisition, deals and policy work.” Key word here being “acquisition.” This team of patent specialists will also have to:
- Determine strategic areas for patenting
- Negotiate patent related deals including licensing and acquisitions
- Respond to notice letters and assist with patent litigation
- Evaluate and reply to potential acquisitions and licensing opportunities
- Generally educate researchers and engineers on patent issues
In other words, Google is going to be patenting a whole lot of stuff from now on, while acquiring a bunch of companies. Of course, this Super Friends of lawyers will also help Google in its current fight with Oracle and other patent trolls.
I have to say, there was moment after I found out Google lost the Nortel bid that I truly feared for the future of Android. There are just so many large companies (Microsoft, Apple, Oracle, RIM, Nokia) that want to see the OS dead. It can be a bit overwhelming to see Google get attacked on so many fronts. I guess that’s what happens when you build something as successful as Android.
But that fear is now gone. Google clearly knows this patent warfare is a very serious threat to Android. Possibly the biggest threat, seeing how most competitors have given up on competing with better products.