05
Nov
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Google announced in a statement today that Wisconsin Judge Barbara Crabb has dismissed Apple's lawsuit against Motorola Mobility claiming the Google-owned Moto's practices related to standards-essential patent licensing were unfair.

The lawsuit was set to go to trial in US District Court in Madison, Wisconsin this afternoon but was, according to Google, dismissed with prejudice by Judge Crabb this morning. Readers may remember that a similar Apple vs Motorola trial was canceled in Illinois by Judge Richard Posner earlier this year.

For those just tuning in, the case was centered around the licensing of some of Motorola Mobility's patents (which Google bought along with the company in May). Apple complained that Moto was being unfair in its licensing of standard-essential wireless patents, and sought to settle the matter with a court order, which was fine with Motorola so long as Apple would also be held to the decision. Apple, however, said it would only agree to this if the court's determination were a maximum of $1.00 per iPhone to license the patents. Yes, one dollar. Motorola, meanwhile, was seeking up to 2.25% per device.

In reaction to today's dismissal, Google said the following:

Motorola has long offered licensing to our extensive patent portfolio at a reasonable and non-discriminatory rate in line with industry standards. We remain interested in reaching an agreement with Apple.

While the dismissal of this case is good news, it doesn't mean that the dispute is entirely over – Apple can still appeal the decision in Wisconsin, but since the suit was dismissed with prejudice, the Cupertino giant cannot pursue these same claims by re-filing in US District Court. There is little doubt that Apple will appeal the decision, and of course we'll keep you up to date as things progress. Until then, see the original story linked below.

Via Reuters

Liam Spradlin
Liam loves Android, design, user experience, and travel. He doesn't love ill-proportioned letter forms, advertisements made entirely of stock photography, and writing biographical snippets.

  • http://www.facebook.com/DaATXMan Danny Davis

    One crumbling cookie

  • northstar17

    This is somewhat interesting as it may be related to the rumor that the FTC is in favor of suing Google/Motorola for patent antitrust violations. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-11-01/ftc-staff-said-to-formally-recommend-google-patent-suit.html
    Its been dismissed from cival court, and my impression is that you need less proof to suceed there than you would in a criminal/DOJ vs. Google proceeding?

    • aiden9

      Not really related. Basically Apple wanted the court case but didn't want to be held to it if they didn't like the results. Obviously there is no point in the case being played out if the results won't stick(exception being the appeal process) so the judge threw it out. No evidence even made it to the table, just stubborn and foolish demands on Apple's part before it ever began.

  • Blaine Magee

    BAWHAHAHAHAHA

  • Greyhame

    Packers won, Badgers didn't lose, and a Wisconsin judge dismissed Apple's lawsuit against Motorola with prejudice.

    ...Yeah, good day to be a Wisconsinite. =]

  • Elias

    I would love to see Motorola fuck Apple in the butthole and license their patents to them at exorbitant prices, like 50% of each icrap. Someone must stick it to Apple.

    • flosserelli

      Even better would be Motorola refusing to make a deal with Apple altogether, leaving Apple unable to sell *anything* using Motorola's patents. But I know that will never happen...

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=667020551 Jose Torres

    This is just Apple trying (and failing) to use our legal system to lessen the amount they pay to Motorola, THIS is the definition of a Legal System Troll. And is that 2.25% of the retail value?

    • Justin W

      Yes, a full 2.25% of their retail sale value. That equates to a maximum (64Gb iPhone 5) of $19.125 per phone. And they are whining because it's too much to pay when they demanded more than $30 from Samsung per phone. I call foul play.

      • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

        Ehhh, one catch to that...

        The subject here is patents that fall under FRAND rules. The mandate is that those patents are essential to a product in that space and the pricing must be reasonable and everybody must be allowed to license them.

        Strictly speaking, the patents Apple and Samsung were negotiating over weren't technically essential (as far as I recall reading). Of course, they were also trivial patents, so Apple was demanding about 10 times more than they were worth.

        • Jonathon Luken

          if they have cross licensing with other terms and the value of the cross license is that 2.25% and apple doesnt want to cross license then it is fair and reasonable.

        • Jonathon Luken

          if they have cross licensing with other terms and the value of the cross license is that 2.25% and apple doesnt want to cross license then it is fair and reasonable.

        • Jonathon Luken

          if they have cross licensing with other terms and the value of the cross license is that 2.25% and apple doesnt want to cross license then it is fair and reasonable.

  • SamT

    $1 per device is a lot of money. I wish they would give me $1 per device

    • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

      Apple has demanded as much as $40 / device from Samsung in negotiations.

      • DCMAKER

        and samsung doesn't have the kind of profit margin apple has to boot! I am sure someone on here can back that for me.

  • Matthew Fry

    Scumbag Apple: charges $850 for the 64GB iPhone 5, won't pay $20 to Motorola for the technology they put in it.

  • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

    Can we just take a moment to consider what Apple would be doing if the situation was reversed? They would have already filed for and pushed through a preliminary injunction prior this having ever reached a courtroom. Upon this decision, they would have filed to make the injunction permanent, and they would put up every possible roadblock to avoid licensing. They would also have hit every media outlet and spread the word to all of their podcasters and rumor sites to say every horrible thing in the book.

    Google (via Motorola Mobility) has remained completely reasonable, as far as I know they aren't filing for any injunctions (they should, just to put Apple into an appropriately desperate position), and they are only gloating a little bit...

    I realize that it might set a bad precedent with the FTC threat (I still don't think that will happen), but Apple needs to be punished for the crap they are pulling. It's not just 'business as usual' lawsuits or antics for them, they have abused the legal system enough. I don't normally believe that 'an eye for an eye' is the best policy, but it seems appropriate given the history.

    • NexusKoolaid

      Best way to punish Apple - Buy Android. Don't need a judge for that, and everyone can play.

      • http://AndroidPolice.com/ Liam Spradlin

        I agree that the market should bear things like competition between tech companies out, but I think the point Cody was making was that - from the outset - it seems like Apple is using litigation to work against the market by attacking competitors with claims and unfair expectations like those presented in this case.

        I don't agree that Apple should be actively "punished" legally, but the move to dismiss this case is a step in the right direction toward actually working things out fairly (in my mind, anyway).

        • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

          Pretty much my thoughts, though I honestly would like to see a filing for a preliminary injunction against the iPhone and iPad; not necessarily pursued and granted, only filed. I don't want to see the iPhone banned (even temporarily), but I do want to see Apple put in the position of having to play defensively. I think they would act very differently and much more responsibly if forced to go to the negotiating table with no choice but to follow the rules.

          Based on their actions over the last couple of years, it seems appropriate to draw a parallel between Apple and a typical 3-5 year old. They refuse to share, they throw a fit if somebody has something they don't, they won't apologize appropriately when they are remanded, they are even trying to literally kill the younger brother (Android) because he's getting more attention...These are the traits of a child, a very psychopathic child. One of the great ways of punishing a child is to take away their favorite toys, especially if they are using a toy inappropriately. Apple's absolute favorite toy is the legal system. We're starting to see judges responding more sensibly to Apple, but Apple is going to take a very long time to learn the lessons at this rate. It might be that the only good way to handle them is a spanking, and while it looks extreme as an outsider, a few days of banning the sale of iPhones and iPads would be a spectacularly clear spanking...until a fair patent licensing deal is forged in negotiations, of course. :)

  • Mikael Guggenheim

    iGreed anyone?