Verizon is getting pretty sick of the patent wars, as you and I have been, and might consider asking President Obama for help. With Apple suing Samsung, Samsung suing back, Apple and HTC in the mix, Microsoft and Motorola going at it, and everyone else in between, it’s almost like a round robin of patent lawsuits. In the end, it’ll just turn into a bunch of boring licensing deals if no one gets lucky and successfully hits anyone with serious injunctions.
The WSJ reports:
But another peculiarity of the ITC is that its rulings can be waived by the president. Verizon thinks it would be great if President Obama, in a blanket statement, made clear he would not let stand any decision blocking importation of consumer wireless devices. The parties then would have to recur to normal patent litigation, and whatever rights and wrongs are discovered could be settled by exchanges of cash. Mobile is a rare industry exhibiting growth, job creation and animal spirits.
The mobile space is definitely interesting for patent law because so many different functions converge and cross lines. And when manufacturers are racing to patent certain technologies first, it pretty much blocks features for everyone else. I mean, what on earth can you do when you’re hit with a lawsuit telling you that you’re infringing on a wireless technology patent that makes use of wireless radios in such a fashion that battery life may be conserved?
Although the patent wars are getting pretty ridiculous, it’s hard to imagine that Obama would get personally involved. On the other hand, the leader of the free world has made his smartphone addictions well known. Just a few years ago, Obama’s treasured BlackBerry had to be pulled for a more secure device–a story that made headlines everywhere.
What do you think? Should the executive branch get involved in the wireless technology patent wars? Especially if it causes new gadgets to be banned from being imported?