The news late Friday that two of the great companies of our era decided to settle ongoing patent litigation over smart phones is welcome news for consumers and the technology industry. CCIA would rather see companies like this compete on innovation – not in the courtroom. Patent lawsuits too often sidetrack tech company executives, but thrust engineers, programmers and scientists into the legal arena including endless meetings with lawyers. In 2012, the New York Times reported that “spending by Apple and Google on patent lawsuits and unusually big-dollar patent purchases exceeded spending on research and development of new products, according to public filings.”
While we’re pleased to see these two companies reach a resolution of these claims, major patent reform is needed. There are many aspects of the current patent regulatory system that need changing so that innovative tech companies and the next generation of innovators won’t be chilled or crippled by costly litigation – especially lawsuits brought by patent trolls that have little chance of success.
For more, please see CCIA Patent Counsel Matt Levy’s blog post Monday in Patent Progress.