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IBM and Samsung In Huge Patent Deal

By - Source: IBM | B 17 comments

IBM and Samsung have agreed on a patent cross-licensing deal under which the companies are licensing their "respective" patent portfolios to each other.

According to IBM, the deal includes a "wide range" of semiconductors, telecommunications, visual and mobile communication, software and technology services. While there was no detailed information available our sources mentioned that the agreement is likely among the widest ranging ever signed in the IT industry.

Of course, such an agreement was merely a matter of time, as IBM and Samsung are the leading organizations in the U.S. patent race in which the companies are attempting to acquire copyrights in truckload volumes. Of the 219,614 patents granted by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office last year, IBM gobbled up 5896 and Samsung 4551. This week alone, IBM was granted 152 patents and applied for 47, which is a rather low number for the company. Samsung received 113 patents and filed 121 applications.  

Not all of the patents filed and granted relate directly to the company's business and the patent listings are occasionally entertaining reading material from the outside. For example, IBM received a patent for a specific (lawn) irrigation system and Samsung recently ventured into automatic shooting robots. The favorite remains Samsung's attempt to patent the patent. So it makes only sense that these two giants cross-patent a large portion of their "portfolios".

We are actually somewhat surprised that innovation in this country can still happen without getting your pants sued off. "Patents and innovation are a critical component of IBM's high-value business strategy," said Ken King, vice president, Patents, Software & Services IP Licensing for IBM, in a prepared statement. "In addition to protecting the huge investment we make in R&D, patents also allow us establish cross-licenses, which provide IBM and partners like Samsung with significant freedom of action, which is essential in the competitive global business environment."      


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  • -3 Hide
    thrust2night , February 10, 2011 10:55 PM
    This week alone, IBM was granted 152 patents and applied for 47 ...

    They applied for 47 patents and were granted 152?
  • 6 Hide
    maestintaolius , February 10, 2011 11:00 PM
    thrust2nightThey applied for 47 patents and were granted 152?

    There's lag between when you apply and when you get the patent.
  • 4 Hide
    jhansonxi , February 10, 2011 11:14 PM
    "Samsung recently ventured into automatic shooting robots."

    I'm sure Samsung's shareholders will be happy about the application of their intellectual property when the machines become self-aware and begin to exterminate humanity. Look for the "Samsung Certified" sticker when it's your turn.
  • Display all 17 comments.
  • -1 Hide
    verbalizer , February 10, 2011 11:18 PM
    IBM huh..
  • 2 Hide
    Richeemxx , February 10, 2011 11:36 PM
    Patent the patent idea...gotta love that!! Some of this is getting out of hand just like copyright laws and copyrighting none distinct common words.
  • 4 Hide
    jprahman , February 11, 2011 12:37 AM
    The favorite remains Samsung's attempt to patent the patent

    Nice typo. It was IBM that patented the patent.
  • 0 Hide
    cmartin011 , February 11, 2011 9:07 AM
    HMMMM... when is this patent system going to break down?? what a joke i shit on both samsung and IBM and what ever patent bull shit there is out there. matter of a fact i think ill shit on American regulations that suffocate good business's out of the USA to why i am at it..
  • 2 Hide
    g00fysmiley , February 11, 2011 11:57 AM
    some patents make sense to protect ideas... the problem is you also have companies like rambus that exploit this and never actually try and r&d anything... they just get a patent wait for somebody to do somethign useful but somewhat related then expect a handout..

    oh wait has rambus patented patent trolling... where do i have to mail a finskey for patent violation on this comment
  • -2 Hide
    greliu , February 11, 2011 1:06 PM
    Why does everyone on TH hate intellectual property rights and patents?
  • 0 Hide
    verbalizer , February 11, 2011 1:43 PM
    it's not about that, it's about 'big-brother' that's already watching us and the creation of a real "sky-net"... :ouch: 
  • 0 Hide
    mosu , February 11, 2011 5:00 PM
    If I could patent living, so everybody should pay me just for existing...
  • 0 Hide
    Niva , February 11, 2011 8:38 PM
    Mosu, clearly you can't patent living as there's plenty of evidence of it having been done and implemented before you applied for the patent.
  • 0 Hide
    pjmelect , February 11, 2011 11:16 PM
    IBM patented the patent system not Samsung.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , February 14, 2011 3:08 AM
    The dirty details are few and far betwixt, but IBM and Samsung have just joined up to announce a patent cross-license agreement that could have significant impact in the world we obsess with. According the (admittedly brief) release embedded after the break, the two will license their respective patent portfolios to each other, but considering that specific terms and conditions are being kept under wraps for now, it's on us to imagine what kind of magic will result from the agreement.
  • 0 Hide
    tomate2 , February 14, 2011 5:33 AM
    skynet anyone?? xD
  • 0 Hide
    mikem_90 , February 16, 2011 10:11 PM
    NivaMosu, clearly you can't patent living as there's plenty of evidence of it having been done and implemented before you applied for the patent.

    Not if the patent office is so overworked, it does a "Approve All" like its been doing lately. Really, to get through backlog, they barely even look at many of them coming in.

    Tons of bad patents are being approved, and it costs millions and years to get rid of ONE bad patent. The US is done for...
  • 0 Hide
    johnjinglehymersmith_69 , March 28, 2011 4:23 AM
    IBM is where it all started for me. Back way back before I new what RAM was or should I say SIMS cards or whatever it was back in the early mid eighties.