Google legal honcho: Apple, Oracle, Microsoft use ‘bogus patents’ to wage hostile campaign against sainted Android

David Drummond, Google Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer, today posted the following blog post, verbatim:

I have worked in the tech sector for over two decades. Microsoft and Apple have always been at each other’s throats, so when they get into bed together you have to start wondering what’s going on. Here is what’s happening:

Android is on fire. More than 550,000 Android devices are activated every day, through a network of 39 manufacturers and 231 carriers. Android and other platforms are competing hard against each other, and that’s yielding cool new devices and amazing mobile apps for consumers.

But Android’s success has yielded something else: a hostile, organized campaign against Android by Microsoft, Oracle, Apple and other companies, waged through bogus patents.

They’re doing this by banding together to acquire Novell’s old patents (the “CPTN” group including Microsoft and Apple) and Nortel’s old patents (the “Rockstar” group including Microsoft and Apple), to make sure Google didn’t get them; seeking $15 licensing fees for every Android device; attempting to make it more expensive for phone manufacturers to license Android (which we provide free of charge) than Windows Mobile; and even suing Barnes & Noble, HTC, Motorola, and Samsung. Patents were meant to encourage innovation, but lately they are being used as a weapon to stop it.

A smartphone might involve as many as 250,000 (largely questionable) patent claims, and our competitors want to impose a “tax” for these dubious patents that makes Android devices more expensive for consumers. They want to make it harder for manufacturers to sell Android devices. Instead of competing by building new features or devices, they are fighting through litigation.

This anti-competitive strategy is also escalating the cost of patents way beyond what they’re really worth. Microsoft and Apple’s winning $4.5 billion for Nortel’s patent portfolio was nearly five times larger than the pre-auction estimate of $1 billion. Fortunately, the law frowns on the accumulation of dubious patents for anti-competitive means — which means these deals are likely to draw regulatory scrutiny, and this patent bubble will pop.

We’re not naive; technology is a tough and ever-changing industry and we work very hard to stay focused on our own business and make better products. But in this instance we thought it was important to speak out and make it clear that we’re determined to preserve Android as a competitive choice for consumers, by stopping those who are trying to strangle it.

We’re looking intensely at a number of ways to do that. We’re encouraged that the Department of Justice forced the group I mentioned earlier to license the former Novell patents on fair terms, and that it’s looking into whether Microsoft and Apple acquired the Nortel patents for anti-competitive means. We’re also looking at other ways to reduce the anti-competitive threats against Android by strengthening our own patent portfolio. Unless we act, consumers could face rising costs for Android devices — and fewer choices for their next phone.

Source: A whiny wuss who pecks out horseshit on the Official Google Blog.

MacDailyNews Take: If this is Google’s Chief Legal Officer, they’re doomed.

Beyond that, the fear is palpable. Don’t steal IP and you’ll have nothing to fear, Davey. Plus, you wouldn’t have to try (and fail) to buy other company’s patents in order to defend your theft, π-boys.

Apple invented the iPhone, not Google.

Unlock the tower and shout that up to the mole that your do-know-evil company recently kicked upstairs.

And, oh by the way: Google turned down chance to join Microsoft in the Novell patent bid. Explain that, Davey.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]

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71 Comments

    1. Sure he knows what’s going on. He’s waging a PR campaign to possibly sway public opinion. He doesn’t care what the Apple community thinks.

      Framing the dialogue or issues shapes and directs public opinion. That’s how Fox News does it. The truth doesn’t matter. Rather, more important to convince the public about what they ought to be thinking/believing.

      1. He comes off sounding like the Information MInister. This is an odd statement for counsel to make in public before the courts have had a chance to examine pending legal claims. Smacks of desperation and may be used against Google.

      2. Sure he knows what’s going on. He’s waging a PR campaign to possibly sway public opinion. He doesn’t care what the Apple community thinks.

        Framing the dialogue or issues shapes and directs public opinion. That’s how NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, and the rest of the U.S. “mainstream” media does it. The truth doesn’t matter. Rather, more important to convince the public about what they ought to be thinking/believing.

      3. Blah, blah, blah … After his circumlocutory attacks on Apple and Microsoft for acquiring patents, he thinks it’s all right for Google to also go patent hunting. Hypocrite!

  1. They want this…they want that…boo hoo hoo.

    What they want is for Google to make their own fscking shit and not steal from every other tech company in existence.

  2. My hate for Google just hit a all time high, these low life scum will stop at nothing to make themselves look as if the whole world is hurting them and they are the victim.

    They lobby with billions of dollars and then use that connection to rally hope in getting a DOJ Approved NORTEL deal overturned because they hadn’t the intelligence to bid with the dignity and relevance of a real Company.

    I have heard of sore losers and have seen them in my time, but these idiots take the cake, and by writing this shows how they talk out of each side of there prospective mouths by attacking the same system they used just last week to purchase 1000.00 IBM Patents.

    On top of it all, they are scared, a few days ago Judge Allsup allowed the email to be used as evidence that Google was aware that they needed to license those patents from Sun/Oracle.

    They are trying to get favor in the tech community in order to turn this around as a personal attack to save Android from it’s all to soon death of cost and stollen IP.

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