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Google thwarts recent attempt to genericize its trademarked brand name

Google might have joined the common vernacular — it was entered into the venerable Oxford English Dictionary back in 2006, after all — but it has staunchly resisted attempts to render the actual trademark "Google" invalid. A recent suit to invalidate the term has been decided in Google's favor, so that's one more attempt thwarted. Instead of joining the vaulted halls of cellophane, linoleum, and thermos, Google will remain a trademark.

Genericization is a big problem for big businesses. Companies like Xerox and Zamboni have had to launch ad campaigns in the past to keep their terms out of common use.

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[Very Real] ZeniMax sets its VR litigating sights on Samsung

The tale of ZeniMax vs. The World of VR is developing into a modern-day saga of Homeric proportions with each new filing. Although Oculus/Facebook was found innocent of ZeniMax's previous accusations, it did end up having to cough up around $500 million as a result of NDA violations, copyright infringements, and for lying about a few things. Even so, it seemed as if the general dance was winding down and all the monsters short of the inevitable appeals had been slain. But the Hydra's heads are many, and ZeniMax is back with a new target: Samsung.

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Chrome Dev has a new search widget you can try out

Google apparently thinks you don't have enough ways to search Google on your phone. On my Pixel, I have the Google search 'pill' on the home screen, and Google Assistant if I hold down on the home button or use 'OK Google.' If you have Chrome Dev, you can use a new search widget as well.

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Plastc joins the likes of Coin, declaring bankruptcy

Some of you might remember Plastc. They were a company that jumped on the re-programmable credit card train Coin and Google Wallet started in '13 and '12, respectively. They may have been a bit later to the game in 2014 after even Google had decided that it wasn't a good idea anymore, but they made the attempt. Later even the funding-successful Coin had to close shop due to delays, problems, and a general failure to properly keep up with the market. Unlike Coin, though, Plastc never managed to actually deliver on a product. And now just like its forebears, Plastc has decided it's time to die.

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Google may be sued over Nexus 6P early shutdown and bootloop issues

The Android hardware space is fast beginning to look like a watered down episode of Suits. Following on from news earlier in the week that LG is facing a bootloop lawsuit regarding several of its phones, Huawei's Nexus 6P could be responsible for Google encountering a similar inconvenience. As well as being accused of the same bootloop problem that has blighted LG devices, there are reports from consumers that the Nexus 6P has a premature battery shutdown problem.

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Qualcomm ordered to pay out nearly a billion dollars to BlackBerry over royalty dispute

News of Qualcomm's string of lawsuits continues, this time through an arbitration result in a disagreement between the chipset maker and BlackBerry. BlackBerry alleged that they were overpaying Qualcomm for royalties.

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Google announces PAX, a cross-licensing program to stop patent litigation among Android OEMs

Google announced the existence of a new program known as PAX today, which apparently stands for Android Networked Cross-License Agreement (someone should tell Google how acronyms work). PAX is intended to reduce litigation between Android device makers by granting royalty-free licenses to any Android-related patents held by its members to all other members.

Google, Samsung, LG, HTC, Foxconn, HMD Global, Coolpad, BQ, and Allview are the founding members, which Google claims collectively control over 230,000 patents globally. Membership in PAX is free and open to any company in the business of making Android stuff. There's no obligation for Android OEMs to join, either.

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On heels of FTC suit, Apple is now suing Qualcomm for $1 billion, alleges unfair licensing practices [Update: Qualcomm responds]

Apple has filed a lawsuit against Qualcomm in California today, claiming damages around $1 billion. The damages stem from what Apple claims are rebate payments Qualcomm refused to pay. Specifically, Apple alleges Qualcomm withheld the payments after the iPhone-maker began to cooperate with Korea authorities who later fined Qualcomm $850 million in an antitrust investigation.

Earlier this week, the FTC filed suit against Qualcomm for anti-competitive practices.

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South Korean regulatory agency fines Qualcomm $854 million for patent bullying

All's fair in love and war and high-stakes international B2B sales. Wait, that's not true: there's actually quite a lot of regulation on that last bit. Just ask the Korean Fair Trade Commission, which presented American chipmaking giant Qualcomm with a gigantic fine for unfair business practices on Wednesday. According to the KFTC, Qualcomm abused its dominant business position to force its manufacturing partners to pay exorbitant patent licensing fees when selling its widely-used mobile modem chips.

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Verizon won't send Samsung's charge-blocking Note 7 update, citing emergency contact concerns

Here's an interesting wrinkle in the rapidly-closing saga of the Galaxy Note 7. Yesterday Samsung announced that it would send a software over-the-air update to the few remaining phones in the US, preventing the devices from taking a new electricity charge, and hopefully stopping any more battery-based fires. It's far from the first measure the company has taken to further encourage owners of the defective phones to accept the voluntary recall, but it might be the last. American wireless carrier Verizon, for reasons of its own, isn't participating in the latest software update.

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