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Old Jan 23, 2014, 12:08 PM   #1
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Huawei Settles with Apple/Microsoft 'Rockstar Consortium' Over Nortel Patents




The Apple-backed "Rockstar consortium" has filed a joint motion with Huawei in U.S. District Court of Eastern Texas to dismiss with prejudice Rockstar's claims of patent infringement against the Chinese handset manufacturer. Though the motion does not mention a settlement amount, it is reasonable to expect there was some monetary licensing agreement that will allow Huawei to continue using the patents.
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Pursuant to Rule 41(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the terms of a separate agreement, Plaintiffs Rockstar Consortium US LP and MobileStar Technologies LLC (collectively "Plaintiffs") and Defendants Huawei Investment & Holding Co., Ltd., Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd., Huawei Device (Hong Kong) Co., Ltd., Huawei Technologies USA, Inc., Huawei Device USA Inc., Huawei Technologies Cooperatief U.A., and Futurewei Technologies, Inc. (collectively "Huawei") hereby move the Court to dismiss with prejudice all of Plaintiffs' claims against Huawei, including but not limited to any of Plaintiffs' claims against any direct or indirect Huawei customer as is based in whole or in part upon the use of a Huawei product, with the parties to bear their own costs and fees, including attorneys' fees.
Huawei is the first of seven Android OEMs cited in the original lawsuit to settle with Rockstar. Other high-profile companies mentioned in the suit include Google, Samsung, HTC, ZTE, LG, Pantech, and ASUSTeK. The decision by Huawei to settle may impact the other defendants in the case as it suggests to the court that Rockstar's claims of patent infringement may have reasonable merit. As a result, other OEMs may decide to pursue a settlement rather than fight the claims in court.

The patents in question are related search technology and user profiles. They were obtained by Rockstar as part of a patent collection the consortium purchased in 2011 from bankrupt Canadian communications company Nortel.

Article Link: Huawei Settles with Apple/Microsoft 'Rockstar Consortium' Over Nortel Patents
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Old Jan 23, 2014, 12:21 PM   #2
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Am I the only one that (possibly naively) believes software patents should go public domain and not be considered sellable assets when a company fails?
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Old Jan 23, 2014, 12:42 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by glutenenvy View Post
Am I the only one that (possibly naively) believes software patents should go public domain and not be considered sellable assets when a company fails?
It seems to me a fundamentally bad idea to have different rules of patent ownership for different classes of technology. If you had said "there need to be tighter standards for software patents", I think a lot of people would agree with that.
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Old Jan 23, 2014, 02:41 PM   #4
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It seems to me a fundamentally bad idea to have different rules of patent ownership for different classes of technology. If you had said "there need to be tighter standards for software patents", I think a lot of people would agree with that.

Or software shouldn't be patentable at all - a question the US Supreme Court may address later this year.

But I don't see why certain patents should be treated differently than others in terms of being an asset of value when a company goes bankrupt.
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Old Jan 23, 2014, 03:04 PM   #5
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Although I don't appreciate patent trials as a monetary offensive, I'm hoping that the Rockstar Consortium's idea is to license any and all companies for a small price so that everyone can make use of the patents, so that there exists no ambiguities about licensing when true patent trolls come knocking.
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Old Jan 23, 2014, 03:55 PM   #6
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We need patents. But it would be better if the technical patents would expire after lets say 10 years just like the medical patents expire after a certain time.
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Old Jan 23, 2014, 04:50 PM   #7
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For Huawei to be the first (?) to settle on this is interesting. They're pretty well-known in the industry for their particularly loose standards (and cavalier attitude) regarding honoring others' intellectual property rights.

(did I say that in an innocuous enough manner?)

Try searching for "huawei intellectual property theft".

Cisco statement

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Unlike the smartphone patent battles, where parties try to protect and grow their market share by suing each other over broad patents where no direct copying is required, let alone even knowledge that a patent exists, this litigation involved allegations by Cisco of direct, verbatim copying of our source code, to say nothing of our command line interface, our help screens, our copyrighted manuals and other elements of our products.
Network World article

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Folklore within the routing and switching community was that Huawei stole router product secrets from Cisco, down to the chassis, IOS and all the way down to the spelling errors in the manuals. Many have said it for years, but 60 Minutes put it on worldwide television tonight for everyone to know. Cisco did file suit and it was settled out of court, so we will never know what really happened. But Huawei did it, they know it, we know and Cisco knows it. Otherwise they would have never settled the court case.
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Old Jan 23, 2014, 07:09 PM   #8
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Old Jan 24, 2014, 04:19 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by glutenenvy View Post
Am I the only one that (possibly naively) believes software patents should go public domain and not be considered sellable assets when a company fails?
The precedent set would threaten other areas of IP. So Michael Jackson dies bankrupt, and the Beatles songbook goes public domain.. I don't think so. And like heirs, shareholders and creditors have well established rights.

Last edited by stroydex; Jan 24, 2014 at 04:31 AM.
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Old Jan 24, 2014, 03:27 PM   #10
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The precedent set would threaten other areas of IP. So Michael Jackson dies bankrupt, and the Beatles songbook goes public domain.. I don't think so. And like heirs, shareholders and creditors have well established rights.
Software patents are much more like small pieces of DNA than like artistic works. The (small percentage of) software patents and summeries I've read are only individual tiny building blocks to a finished product. An artistic work is a finished product.

If a software patent were usually for a complete consumer marketable widget, I'd have to agree with your point. Too much money is wasted on patent baiting and legal fishing. We as the consumers end up paying for that eventually in end pricing.
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