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Google signs patent cross-licensing agreement with Tencent

The deal also sees Google and Tencent collaborating on future technology developments, though neither company said what those developments could be.

Published onJanuary 19, 2018


  • Google announced it reached a cross-licensing agreement with Chinese tech giant Tencent.
  • The deal also led to both companies collaborating on future technology developments.
  • Google and Tencent did not divulge any more specifics regarding the deal.

Google might not have the foothold in China that it wants, but the search giant looks to remain relevant in the region with its patent cross-licensing agreement with Tencent.

We do not know how much the deal was worth, but it is sure to be lucrative. After all, Tencent is valued at over $500 billion. Google says this is a “long-term” agreement with the Chinese tech giant, one that covers “a broad range of products and technologies.”

“By working together on agreements such as this, tech companies can focus on building better products and services for their users,” said Google head of patents Michael Lee.

The deal also sees Google and Tencent promising to collaborate on future technology developments. Neither company shared what those developments are, nor did they share how much access they have to each other’s patent portfolio.

For Google, the agreement represents further headway into China without relying on the banned Google Search. The search giant recently led a $120 million investment in Chinese online e-sports platform Chushou and announced it will open an AI center in China.

Google denies reports that Google Maps relaunched in China

Then again, deals like these also help Google avoid litigation over patent infringement. That is why the search giant signed similar deals with Samsung, Cisco, LG, and others.

As for Tencent, this looks more like a muscle-flexing move than anything else. The company overlooks WeChat, China’s top social media and payments platform that is closing in on one billion users. Reuters reports that Tencent also sees over one of China’s more popular app stores and hosts the country’s largest gaming and livestream platforms.

Tencent is also a company you should start to recognize. The tech giant has investments in Snap, Tesla, and Spotify, and we would not be surprised if 2018 had more in store for Tencent.

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