Google fires back at British Telecom in patent row

Feb 14, 2013
Google fired back at British telecom titan BT Group in US and British courts, escalating a year-old patent battle. Google has accused BT of "patent privateering," a practice where rights to technology are transferred for purposes of suing not building products.

Google fired back at British telecom titan BT Group in US and British courts, escalating a year-old patent battle.

"We have always seen litigation as a last resort, and we work hard to avoid ," said in a statement.

"But, BT has brought several meritless patent claims against Google and our customers—and they've also been arming patent trolls. When faced with these kinds of actions, we will defend ourselves."

Patent trolls are seen as those who get hold of legal rights to technology to profit from litigation, or the threat thereof, rather than apply innovations to products.

Google has accused BT of "patent privateering," a practice where rights to technology are transferred for purposes of suing not building products.

Lawsuits filed by Google in US District Court in California and in Britain accuse BT of infringing on patents related to managing and Internet telephony, according to legal documents.

BT sued Google in December 2011, accusing the Internet giant of infringing on half a dozen US patents involving communication, maps and storing data such as music.

The British firm declined to comment on the pending litigation.

Explore further: Why the Sony hack isn't big news in Japan

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Google buys IBM patents to beef up portfolio

Jul 30, 2011

Google has bought more than 1,000 technology patents from IBM as the Internet giant seeks to build up its portfolio and head off potential intellectual property suits.

Recommended for you

China's Xiaomi raises more than $1 bn in funding

5 hours ago

China's top smartphone seller Xiaomi Corp. is raising more than $1 billion in a fresh round of funding, a move which would raise its valuation above $45 billion, a report said Sunday.

Why the Sony hack isn't big news in Japan

Dec 20, 2014

Japan's biggest newspaper, Yomiuri Shimbun, featured a story about Sony Corp. on its website Friday. It wasn't about hacking. It was about the company's struggling tablet business.

Sony faces 4th ex-employee lawsuit over hack

Dec 20, 2014

A former director of technology for Sony Pictures Entertainment has sued the company over the data breach that resulted in the online posting of his private financial and personal information.

Sony tells AFP it still plans movie release

Dec 20, 2014

Sony Pictures boss Michael Lynton denied Friday the Hollywood studio has "caved" by canceling the release of "The Interview," and said it still hoped to release the controversial film.

2012 movie massacre hung over 'Interview' decision

Dec 19, 2014

When a group claiming credit for the hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment threated violence against theaters showing "The Interview" earlier this week, the fate of the movie's big-screen life was all but ...

User comments : 2

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

alfie_null
not rated yet Feb 14, 2013
Is BT doing this patent shenanigans to prevent Google from competing with them? In what way?
BSD
3 / 5 (2) Feb 14, 2013
Patent trolls are seen as those who get hold of legal rights to technology to profit from litigation, or the threat thereof, rather than apply innovations to products.

I hope BT fail miserably in the courts and anyone else that abuses patent laws for this purpose. There is no place for this sort of crap and patent laws should be tightened to stop it happening. It does absolutely nothing toward innovation. It should be that anyone caught abusing patents should have the patent rights taken off them.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.