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Google and Samsung sign a 10 year cross-license patent agreement

Google and Samsung have now announced a new cross-license patent agreement between the two companies that covers a "broad range" of different patents over the course of the next 10 years.
January 26, 2014
Samsung Brand Shots CES 2014-5

Today Samsung and Google officially announced a new cross-license patent agreement that covers a “broad range” of current and future patents over the next 10 years. Speaking of the deal, Google expressed that they were pleased by the arrangement and further indicated that “by working together on agreements like this, companies can reduce the potential for litigation and focus instead on innovation.”

An official quote from a Samsung rep was also released via Samsung’s official blog“This agreement with Google is highly significant for the technology industry,” said Dr. Seungho Ahn, the Head of Samsung’s Intellectual Property Center. “Samsung and Google are showing the rest of the industry that there is more to gain from cooperating than engaging in unnecessary patent disputes.”

There is more to gain from cooperating than engaging in unnecessary patent disputes.

Both statements seem to be semi-subtle jabs at companies like Apple and Nokia, who are both known to be quite aggressive when it comes to mobile patent lawsuits.

Considering Samsung is the most popular manufacturer in the Android world, the partnership between the two companies certainly makes sense, even if both Google and Samsung have their own agendas that seem to clash at times.

Now it’s important to note that not all patents are covered by the deal. Not surprisingly, the official press release was pretty vague about what was covered and what isn’t. While it’s just speculation on our part, we wouldn’t be too surprised if certain Motorola patents are excluded from the deal. We imagine at least some of Samsung’s patents are equally protected. 

Either way, this is big news and (hopefully) a sign of good things to come in the world of Android, and for the mobile industry in general. It would be interesting to see if any of Google’s other major Android partners end up signing similar agreements with Mountain View. What do you think of the Samsung-Google cross-licensing agreement? Surprised, excited, indifferent? Let us know what you think in the comments below!