IBM, Amazon.com settle patent fight

Amazon.com Incorporated has paid IBM an undisclosed amount of money to settle all outstanding patent lawsuits between the two companies which also agreed to a long-term patent cross-licensing deal, giving Amazon access to IBM's patents on Web technology. The two companies have been haggling over patents since September 2002, when IBM said it first approached Amazon about a licensing deal.

However, after they failed to reach an agreement, IBM sued Amazon in October last year, alleging that the company was infringing on a number of its U.S. patents. Two months later, Amazon countersued, claiming that IBM's WebSphere application server infringed on Amazon patents. In its suit, Amazon attacked IBM's patent claims as being ridiculously broad because they would potentially cover everyone using a Web browser to surf the Web. The suit also pointed out that IBM had waited for seven years after Amazon launched its online store, finally approaching the Internet company just as it became profitable.

News source: ComputerWorld

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