Embattled Google lawyer says that patents are hurting innovation and leaving Google to sort through the mess

July 27, 2011
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Google is currently facing multiple patent battles as the amount of litigation against the popular Android OS continues to grow. Google's Eric Schmidt says that he's not too worried about the litigation, but at least one person on the Google legal team seems to be bothered by the litigation. At the same time Larry Page, Google CEO, insists that the patent situation isn't critical.

As of now, there are six different legal complaints field against Android and Google General Counsel Kent Walker thinks that the legal battle is hurting consumers and leaving Google to "sort through the mess." Walker also noted that Google is exploring a variety of things as it works through all the litigation.

Walker also thinks that software patents are "gumming up the works of innovation." Other firms fighting against Google think that the search giant has issues with patents in the tech world because it is new to the market and has little patents of its own reports Bloomberg. Google owns 768 patents according to Bloomberg, and most of them are for search tech. By comparison, Microsoft has over 18,000 patents and Apple has over 4,000. Some Google competitors feel that Android has become popular on the back of work done by others that have been in the market longer.

[via Bloomberg]


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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_VBJ4XGUEOMGGDFA6KXLV26OLUU Roberto Cruz

    This doesn’t make sense. Isn’t Google a patent funded company?

    • Lee

       Last time I checked they are ‘funded’ by advertisement. In fact even Mozilla Firefox is primarily funded by advertisement when they redirect traffic to search engines (such as Google).

    • Yeah

      nope they are an advertisement company, other companies pay google to move their stuff higher in the search results

  • Lee

    The majority of patents out there are invalid. The patent office is not capable of determining the validity of the number of patents that pass through it, part of the ‘validation process’ requires court rooms and trials.  This is not really fair to every one though, as not everyone can afford a fair trial,and not every one wants to take the risk of losing the trial and having to pay damages, so most compromise and work out licensing fees and the patents are never validated.

    If the rules were changed about patents, and the tables were turned, such that there were considerable financial risk in frivolous patent law suits, corporations would not be measured in how many patents they have, but in the number of validated patents they had, which would be considerably smaller.