updated 12:54 pm EDT, Tue June 19, 2012
Patents expected to be used for mobile technology
Intel has agreed to buy 1,700 mobile patents from InterDigital. The $375 million cash deal sees patents for Wi-Fi, 3G, and LTE technologies head to the processor giant, which is expected to expand its push into the mobile market. The patent sale comes six months after InterDigital decided against selling itself entirely, preferring to continue its patent licensing business.
Seen by some as a "patent troll," InterDigital owns a large portfolio of patents that it uses to establish licensing deals or push for lawsuits and product bans if companies choose to decline an agreement. The collection of nearly 20,000 patents is expected to earn InterDigital around $800 million annually within a few years. It is unclear if the patent sale will have an effect on InterDigital's licensing revenue, though the sale represents a fraction of the larger portfolio.
Intel launched the Orange Santa Clara handset through the UK's Everything Everywhere network in June, representing one of the first Atom-powered smartphones to arrive on the market. The acquired mobile patents could be used as leverage to securing processor supply deals with handset manufacturers. The companies expect the transaction to be completed by the third quarter of this year, subject to regulatory approval. [via MarketWatch]