Samsung and Google team up for new worldwide patent license agreement

Samsung's Galaxy devices, like the Galaxy S4, use Google's Android OS.

Samsung, which has had great success with the sales of its Android-based Galaxy smartphone products, will now be able to avoid any kind of future patent issues with Google. Today, Samsung announced a new deal with Google that will allow both companies access to each other's existing patents, along with any new ones that are filed in the next 10 years.

Today's press release, which didn't reveal any specific financial terms, should allow for both companies to continue working on their projects without the threat of litigation over their heads. Dr. Seungho Ahn, who heads up Samsung’s Intellectual Property Center, stated in the press release, "Samsung and Google are showing the rest of the industry that there is more to gain from cooperating than engaging in unnecessary patent disputes."

Even though Samsung and Google have cemented this new agreement, there are signs that the folks in Korea might want to move away from using the Android OS in future high end products. Samsung is already sending out invites to a press event in February so it can show off new smartphones that use the company's home grown Tizen OS.

Source: Samsung

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25 Comments

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BAH! Where is the start menu??

How can anyone use this atrocity of a GUI without it?! Where are the blue green hills in the background and butt ugly fonts? My HP ipaq works fine thank you very much!

Need to find my meds

I'm surprised this sort of stuff isn't more regulated. How does this help Samsung and Google's competitors to compete?

Thank you! It also raises quite a high bar for new entrants. If the amount of competitors gets reduced to 2 or 3 then it's not good for anyone.

This is a slam dunk success for Samsung. Google have, yet again, lost big time. This allows Samsung to put features into Tizen (Alien Dalvik) so that the new OS can run Android apps. People who buy the new Tizen phones can use their existing Android apps. Samsung couldn't do this before because it would have opened legal issues with Google.

Google had zero choice about signing this. Samsung likely threatened to dump Android if they didn't get it. I'm just curious what Google got out of this? Two more years of Android support from Samsung? Without Samsung Android is toast and Google will need time to build a replacement OS that doesn't infringe any other company's IP - if they can, which I doubt.

Otherwise, these two companies have threadbare patent portfolios. In fact they are by far the two companies most sued for stealing other companies' patents.

I think you're vastly overestimating how much of a win this is for Samsung and how much of a loss this is for Google. Samsung wouldn't ditch Android so easily, Android is worth far too much money to them. Likewise, Google doesn't actually care that much if Samsung ditches Android or not, there's plenty of other OEM's out there willing to step up and be the next Samsung. Enough of them try, they just can't compete with Samsung's sheer scale.

Even if that were a real threat, do you think Google is really afraid of Tizen right now? Samsung also wouldn't be the first people to include an alternate Dalvik VM in their OS. You can be sure that this agreement is mutually beneficial to both parties.

Major_Plonquer said,
This allows Samsung to put features into Tizen (Alien Dalvik) so that the new OS can run Android apps. People who buy the new Tizen phones can use their existing Android apps. Samsung couldn't do this before because it would have opened legal issues with Google.

Jolla's Sailfish is doing that exactly without any legal issues with Google. Same as Bluestacks.

Dalvik is open source, published under the Apache license (v2.0) which means it can be modified and distributed with no concerns about any kind of royalties.

The argument about Samsung forcing Google's hand to be able to use Dalvik on Tizen holds no water.

Seems a waste of time? I mean aren't Samsung planning to dump Android and go Tizen full-time in the near future? or perhaps that is why this deal took place, to stop Samsung ditching Android? I dunno, just throwing ideas out there and seeing what sticks

Google pulled a fast one on Sammy. Google doesn't have any worthwhile phone or OS patent,or else ms and apple wouldn't be having their way with android OEMs.

vcfan said,
Google pulled a fast one on Sammy. Google doesn't have any worthwhile phone or OS patent,or else ms and apple wouldn't be having their way with android OEMs.

I'd say with the way patent cases vary so widely in outcomes, it's just cheaper for people to settle than necessarily proving that MS actually has a case. If you read the second paragraph of the article it tells why they joined up. More companies should follow that line of thinking. Right now, the way some companies do it, it's just stifling innovation. They somehow get patent on something so broad, no one can implement something even remotely resembling it. Even if they follow a different implementation, but the outcome is similar. That's just wrong.

farmeunit said,

I'd say with the way patent cases vary so widely in outcomes, it's just cheaper for people to settle than necessarily proving that MS actually has a case. If you read the second paragraph of the article it tells why they joined up. More companies should follow that line of thinking. Right now, the way some companies do it, it's just stifling innovation. They somehow get patent on something so broad, no one can implement something even remotely resembling it. Even if they follow a different implementation, but the outcome is similar. That's just wrong.


Microsoft and apple have had such an arrangement for ages, they also pay when they use others ip, whereas google seem to think they can do what they want. This is late in the game gesture that means little.

vcfan said,
Google pulled a fast one on Sammy. Google doesn't have any worthwhile phone or OS patent,or else ms and apple wouldn't be having their way with android OEMs.

Sure, its not like Google owns Motorola or anything... oh wait.

How does one get a Tizen developer device? I am seriously interested in developing Tizen apps. I originally played around with Bada but then since they stopped developing it, I moved into Android development.

Interesting. Granted, I have to wonder who has the stronger, applicable, patent portfolio? Of course, Google did buy Motorola...

Yes, the largest Android OEM that almost single-handedly raised Android to domination definitely had enermous difficulty cutting any sort of deal with the Big Daddy.