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Google ordered to pay hundreds of millions for stealing patented tech

Zach Epstein
January 29th, 2014 at 9:12 AM
Google Patent Lawsuit Ruling

Chalk up another win for the patent trolls — and this time is was a big one. A United States District Court judge for the Northern District of Virginia in 2012 found Google guilty of stealing protected intellectual property and using it in the flagship AdWords advertising platform. On Tuesday evening, the judge finally decided on the penalty: a 1.3585% royalty rate on all U.S.-based AdWords revenue. According to Ars Technica’s math, that figure amounts to as much as $250 million annually on U.S. AdWords revenue of between $15 billion and $18 billion each year.

Who is the big winner in the deal? A patent troll — sorry, a firm that is “engaged in the innovation, development and monetization of intellectual property” — called Vringo, which sued Google back in 2011 using patents it did not invent, but rather acquired from Lycos. The patents expire in 2016 and Google is reportedly liable for damages from November 2012, when the judgement in this trial was first handed down.

When all is said and done, this judgement could cost Google more than $1 billion.

Zach Epstein

Zach Epstein has worked in and around ICT for more than 15 years, first in marketing and business development with two private telcos, then as a writer and editor covering business news, consumer electronics and telecommunications. Zach’s work has been quoted by countless top news publications in the US and around the world. He was also recently named one of the world's top-10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes, as well as one of Inc. Magazine's top-30 Internet of Things experts.




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