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US: Google’s patent grab exponentially ballooned in last decade

 |  December 2, 2013

Google has been vocal in recent years regarding the acquisition of patents, a practice the conglomerate deems as one riddled with low-quality tech patents mainly acquired to harm innovation and used as a weapon against tech firms in court.

But according to data compiled by the US Patent & Trademark office, Google is stockpiling patents at an alarming rate – about 10 patents every day, according to the numbers.

That’s compared with 2003, a year in which Google was awarded just four patents in total.

Reports say the company is set to have gained 1,800 patents to its portfolio this year. The move is likely part of a strategic defense for its smartphone operating system Android as it faces legal challenges in court over patent infringement. Both Google and Samsung, for example, were sued last month by a company representing Microsoft and Apple for patent infringement.

But while Google continues to nab up technology patents, the company publically slams patent litigation as a legal technique that ends up inflating prices on tech gadgets for consumers. Top Google layer David Drummond described many smartphone patents as “largely questionable” and “dubious” on the company’s official blog.

The practice of patent trolling has come under fire as of late within the antitrust community as regulators, lawyers and experts debate how to handle such excess litigation in which companies acquire such technology patents for the sole purpose of suing others that use them, as they are often necessary to build a device.

Full Content: Technology Review

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