Tech companies’ reaction to the Kodak patent auction so far can be summed up thusly: “C’mon, do we really have to pay good money for these things?” How little do tech companies covet these patents? So little that, according to The Wall Street Journal, arch-rivals Google (GOOG) and Apple (AAPL) are actually willing to potentially cooperate and buy them jointly at prices lower than what Kodak has been expecting.
Unnamed sources tell the Journal that if the two companies agree to form a consortium, then the Kodak patents “would essentially be kept out of any one company’s hands and could prevent consortium members from using them in litigation against each other.”
If the Journal’s sources are accurate, then it seems that Apple and Google already feel they have enough patents in their respective portfolios to sue one another with, and don’t feel like paying a premium for Kodak patents that would net them limited compensation in litigation.
Kodak had been hoping to net at least $2.2 billion for its entire patent portfolio, according to the Journal, but so far no bid has even topped $500 million.