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CSIRO settles with US carriers, PC makers over Wi-Fi patents

updated 11:45 pm EDT, Sun April 1, 2012

Australia's CSIRO settles for 229m US

Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) settled its lawsuit over Wi-Fi patents on Monday. The deal with US carriers AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon, as well as PC designers Acer, Lenovo, and Sony, was worth $220 million in local currency, or $229 million US. CSIRO hadn't ruled out more patent lawsuits, although it didn't file for patents in the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) area or the wider Latin America area.

The government institution was primarily responsible for developing Wi-Fi and already has licenses from about 23 companies. Between carriers, PC builders, and those designing the chipsets themselves, CSIRO covers roughly 90 percent of the industry.

Unlike many such legal pursuits, CSIRO isn't likely to continue for much longer. The patents in question expire in 2013 and will reduce the cost of using Wi-Fi for the industry at large, including in smartphones and tablets as well as PCs. [via Reuters]



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