Google Fights Back as Apple, Microsoft Expand Patent Trolling

Patent lawsuits, otherwise known as patent trolling, have become major problems in the technology industry as many companies have found that they can use patents for more than just protecting their ideas. Now Google has reportedly decided to sue a consortium backed by Apple and Microsoft called Rockstar, which has been threatening Android device manufacturers with lawsuits.

The lawsuit against Rockstar will allow Google to protect some of its key Android partners including ASUS, which has been vital to Google's Nexus line of devices. This move seems to be in direct response to Rockstar's storm of lawsuit filings in October, targeting at least half a dozen Android device manufacturers.

Odd Partners

Very few people had ever heard about Rockstar prior to its myriad lawsuit filings in October. Even now, since the group does not actually do anything other than threaten companies with lawsuits, the average consumer does not know about Rockstar or the control it has over the tech industry.

Rockstar is little more than the result of the combined efforts of Apple, Microsoft, and Blackberry to target numerous tech companies in the form of patent lawsuits. The group was formed after the companies paid a total of $4.5 billion in 2012 to receive a plethora of patents once held by the now defunct Canadian telco company, Nortel.

The companies involved with Rockstar have developed the group into a powerful patent troll machine. There are only a handful of people employed by Rockstar. The majority of them are testers who spend their days looking through current tech products to see if anything about them infringes upon the Nortel patents. If the testers find a match, Rockstar's legal arm threatens the "infringing" company with a lawsuit and attempts to extort money or else it will follow through with an actual lawsuit.

Fighting Back

After Rockstar filed lawsuits...

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