Print 28 comment(s) - last by retrospooty.. on Nov 9 at 7:34 AM

In addition to being attacked by rivals, Google may now face the wrath of the U.S. government

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has reportedly authored a report suggesting that the U.S. Department of Justice sue Google over its use of smartphone patents in litigation, according to Reuters.

Google has been indirectly sued by Apple, Inc. (AAPL) and Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), via its subsidiary Motorola Mobility.  Those companies assert Google has stolen their patented technologies.

The Android operating system maker has responded by leveling similar accusations against Apple and Microsoft and suing both of them.  The issue, according the the FTC, is that most of Google's patents (via subsidiary Motorola Mobility) were wireless and video codec patents developed as part of industry standards.  Certain laws and regulations exist that typically prevent such patents -- known as "fair reasonable and non-discriminatory" (FRAND) patents -- from being used in litigation.

In other words, Google may want to defend itself with those patents, but in doing so it may be breaking U.S. laws.

After months of investigation, the formal decision of the five-member government panel will likely land before the end of the year; FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz promised that back in September.  The possible outcomes include dropping the case, negotiating a settlement with Google, or suing Google -- as the new staff report allegedly suggests.

FRAND patents are for friends
The U.S. government is not pleased with Google's litigation regarding FRAND patents.
[Original Image: Cayusa/Flickr; modifications: Jason Mick/DailyTech]

Google commented to Reuters, "We take our commitments to license on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms very seriously."

As the nation's eighth largest company by market value and with dominant positions in the smartphone operating system, email, maps, and search markets, it's perhaps inevitable that Google would run afoul of antitrust regulators.  This is actually Google's second run-in with the FTC this year; in August it settled to the tune of $22.5M USD a suit regarding overriding privacy settings in Apple's Safari browser.

A 2011 grilling by the U.S. Senate and later the U.S. Food and Drug Administration resulted in Google paying a settlement of $500M USD.

Source: Reuters

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You guys are so funny
By Tony Swash on 11/4/2012 7:53:57 PM , Rating: -1
What a strange mental universe some people live in, where things are inverted and everything is viewed upside-down.

Apple invests in product development and R&D and makes game changing products which it defends with patents and this is not only a bad thing but seemingly some sort of plot by the US government to do something to save the economy (apparently Elvis is in charge of the whole program which is being implemented by the same team that faked the lunar landing).

Apple are bad.

Google buys a bunch of patents for stuff it didn't develop or invent and which have been previously licensed as being available in a fair and non-discriminatory way to anybody willing to pay the standard license fees and thus were adopted as industry standards (FRAND) but is now using those patents to discriminate against specific competitors and trying to license them in an unfair way and is thus being investigated by both the US government and the EU for abuse of the FRAND system.

But Google is good.

Apple hatred rots the brain.

RE: You guys are so funny
By spaced_ on 11/4/2012 9:47:42 PM , Rating: 2
This is the whole problem.

Both are gigantic companies. They have neither soul, nor emotions. Neither would exist without humans behind the scenes. Their actions are guided by people behind the company.

Both of these companies and every other company possess cultures that morph and change over time based on who works there and has influence and power within the company. They are publicly owned entities designed to make money, regardless of the original intentions of the founders.

Why you or anyone else, might worship these companies is beyond me.

At least the marketers/advertisers are doing their jobs well. So many suckers ;)

By the way you may not have noticed. This article pretty much is bagging out Google.

RE: You guys are so funny
By retrospooty on 11/4/2012 10:06:08 PM , Rating: 2
Well imagine that Tony makes a post that makes Apple sound like a hero and Google the villain. Wow now I've seen everything. in the real world are both companies not people, not heroes' especially not Apple.

Go home Tony' no one here believes you. Your ageda would be better served if you just create a new user ID and start over.

RE: You guys are so funny
By testerguy on 11/9/2012 5:51:22 AM , Rating: 2
in the real world are both companies not people, not heroes' especially not Apple .

All companies are equal, but some are more equal than others.

RE: You guys are so funny
By retrospooty on 11/9/2012 7:34:19 AM , Rating: 2
OK< 3 posts in a week and all on me... Are you stalking me tg? Looks like I must have pissed you off. Must be rough. LOL

"The Space Elevator will be built about 50 years after everyone stops laughing" -- Sir Arthur C. Clarke

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