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December 11, 2012

FCC close to settling patents disputes with Google

Google has to drop demands for injunctions in lawsuits filed through standard essential patents

By CBR Staff Writer

The US Federal Trade Commission (FCC) and Google are expected to reach a deal to settle the war over the search engine firm’s efforts to halt the sales of products that infringe its patented technologies.

The US agency is, however, not expected to settle the deal soon on the issue of whether Google will adjust its search results to be one up over its rivals in searches related to travel, shopping and other categories.

As per the expected settlement, Google would have to drop demands for injunctions in lawsuits filed through a special class of patents known as standard essential patents, or SEPs.

If there is an exception on the injunction ban, Google would then be allowed to seek injunctions if the firms fail to negotiate SEP licensing.

According to Reuters, the year old investigation addresses search favouritism in addition to minor issues that may intensify rivalry with the search engine firm’s competitors.

The issues include acquiring data, like hotel reviews, from non-Google web sites to use on Google products, and halting the export of information on advertising efficacy to non-Google software.

The office of Texas attorney general is also investigating Google’s practices.

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