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Patents are killing innovation, and Obama wants change

by On June 6, 2013
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Patent lawsuits are a weary subject. It seems that we can’t go a week without hearing about one legal challenge or another. It’s an issue which affects a lot of businesses, especially in the U.S., but the mobile technology industry is undoubtedly the most unpleasant.

As far as mobile technology goes,

One of the most recent cases resulted in a U.S. import ban on AT&T iPhone 4′s for infringing on Samsung’s CDMA communication patent.

For a start, it might make a difference to the types of patents which courts will consider and could help cut down on the number of legal battles fought in the future. The rules are aimed at preventing secondary companies from suing regarding technologies that they don’t actually own or make use of, which should hinder the likes of Samsung’s $25 million Intellectual Keystone Technology firm from trading in and using patents against Samsung’s competitors. The idea here is to clamp down on the business of dealing in patents, which will certainly help reduce the number of claims.

One of the major problems is the increase in the number of “protective” patents being acquired by big technology companies. Apple, Samsung, and Microsoft all take part. But by preventing companies from acquiring broad patents for technologies that they aren’t actually using, the legislation could put an end to a few of the more irritating cases. The key point here is reducing the broadness of patents, which will hopefully prevent companies from suing over similar technologies whilst still protecting innovation from direct rip-offs.

The move to sanction repeatedly abusive court filings could also directly affect the technology industry, preventing or at least deterring companies from repeatedly taking competitors to court over trivial matters, as it will become much more costly if they lose.

There are certainly some positive recommendations in there, but it remains to be seen whether these rules will make a huge difference to big technology company’s spending millions of dollars in court, or if the legislation will even be passed at all. But at least the problems have been recognised by those highest up the legal system, and hopefully something will be done about this shambles in the not to distant future.

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Via: Android Authority

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