DoJ Terrified of Apple Acquiring Nortel's Army of Patents
On June 20, Canadian Telecom Nortel's catalogue of 6,000 plus patents will be up for auction as part of their bankruptcy filing, and the Department of Justice is terrified Apple will walk away with all that intellectual property.
The DoJ is investigating all of the companies that have expressed interest in acquiring what one legal expert called "a stockpile of nuclear weapons as far as patents go." Google, RIM, Apple, Microsoft, and Nokia were all identified as prospective bidders last year.
It appears Apple's recent IP litigation battle between Samsung, and their habit of suing the crap out of everybody has the DoJ nervous. The biggest concern expressed by the DoJ according to the Wall Street Journal is that patents could be used to hamper competition in the wireless market. Oddly enough, the DoJ doesn't view Google as a malicious threat. Their investigation hasn't found any competitive issues if Google were to acquire the patents.
Google, a young company, has an estimated 1,000 patents to its name. Comparatively Apple has between 4,000 and 5,000 patents, and Microsoft has close to 17,000. If either were to acquire Nortels IP the strong legal arm of each company could become a Hulk-like force.
And remember the "Hulk Smash."
Source: Wall Street Journal