Verizon, Google Kiss And Makeup, Enter Cross Licensing Patent Agreement

Over the past few years, Google has been somewhat of an advocate in ridding the tech industry of so-called patent trolls as it looks to foster innovation rather than stifle inventions because of legalities. That mentality continues today with the announcement that Google and Verizon Communications have entered into a long-term patent cross-license agreement covering a broad range of products and technologies.

"This cross license allows both companies to focus on delivering great products and services to consumers around the world," said Kirk Dailey, Head of Patent Transactions at Google. "We're pleased to enter into this agreement with an industry leader like Verizon, and we welcome discussions with any company interested in a similar arrangement."

Verizon Sign
Image Source: Flickr (Eric Hauser)

Specifics of the cross-license agreement were not disclosed, though generally speaking, these types of deals are motivated by both sides wanting to minimize or eliminate altogether costly and time consuming litigation, which in turn frees up resources to focus on new products and services. In a smaller way, it can also be viewed as a nod towards patent reform.

"Verizon has long championed patent reforms and industry actions that promote innovation," said Verizon General Counsel Randal Milch. "We look forward to striking similar deals with other high-tech companies also concerned with the innovation tax that patent trolls often collect."

According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, the two sides have been working on this deal for about a year, which essentially bars both sides from suing each other over any of thousands of patents each company owns or acquires in the next five years.