HTC uses Google patents to extend Apple lawsuit

Steve Dinneen
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HTC has stepped up its war with arch-rival Apple by adding nine recently acquired patents to its ongoing lawsuit.

The ammunition was provided by Google, which sold the patent portfolio to the Taiwanese firm, threatening to further sour its relationship with Apple. Google, which appears unwilling to sue Apple directly, acquired the patents over the last 12 months from firms including Palm and Motorola. It is unclear how much HTC paid for the portfolio.

Cupertino-based Apple also has several patent suits pending against HTC, with a spokesman saying yesterday: “We think competition is healthy, but competitors should create their own original technology, not steal ours.”

Analysts say Google’s biggest ever deal, acquiring Motorola Mobility for $12.5bn (£7.8bn), was an attempt to buy insurance against increasingly aggressive legal attacks from rivals.

Meanwhile, Google snapped up dining recommendations and ratings website Zagat in a push into local markets. Google will link the service up with its places software to provide a vertically integrated location-based recommendation application.