Sony and LG settle patent disputes

Two major electronics companies, Sony and LG, have decided to smoke the peace pipe and settle a rather intense patent dispute. Reuters reports that not only are the two companies no longer fighting but LG has also signed a new cross licensing deal with Sony. Details about how the dispute was resolved and the new cross licensing deal were not revealed. The original dispute started when LG and Sony were not able to come to an agreement to renew a technology sharing deal that expired in 2008. reports that Sony fired the first shot in the patent dispute with LG in late 2010. It tried to claim that some of LG's smartphones violated Sony's patents. LG fired its own complaint against Sony earlier in 2011, claiming that Sony's Playstation 3 game console violated LG's patents concerning the PS3 Blu-Ray player technology. The dispute got so bad that earlier this year LG was successful in temporarily banning shipments of the PS3 console to the Netherlands. That ban lasted 10 days last March.

While Sony and LG may now have fixed their relations, there are still a lot of patent disputes in the consumer electronics world. As we have reported before, Apple is currently in the middle of such a fight with Samsung that has resulted in Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet from being banned from sale in both Australia and in most of Europe. Apple has similar patent fights with Motorola and HTC that are currently in the legal system.

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Patents are a pain in the arse and need to be abolished, or at least revamped so companies cannot patent the most vague and generalised of ideas. They should also be limited to things that actually exist, not just what somebody has imagined up.

This gave me an idea... what if all the non Apple companies settle down like this and then decide to demand Apple? It doesn't paint good for them precisely...

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