Will collect royalties from parties such as Cisco and Google
(Updated with correct purchase price, lawsuit settlements) A subsidiary of San Francisco-based RPX Corporation, RPX Clearinghouse, is buying patent assets held by the Apple-led Rockstar Consortium, according to an announcement. Rockstar was formed by Apple, BlackBerry, Ericsson, Microsoft, and Sony in 2011 in order to buy some 6,000 patents in the wake of Nortel's bankruptcy. Although roughly 2,000 of the patents have already been separately distributed, RPX has entered into a deal in which it will receive license payments from a syndicate of over 30 companies, such as Cisco and Google.
Settlement should cover other companies such as Time Warner, Suddenlink
Cisco is said to be preparing to pay a $188 million pre-tax charge to settle a lawsuit brought against it by Rockstar, the Apple-led patent holding firm born out of the remains of Nortel Networks. The company recent mentioned a $188 million payout in an earnings call. The connection to the settlement can be made, as Cisco has asked the judge in the lawsuit to stay litigation because it has signed a "term sheet" with Rockstar.
Court ruling could have impacts on global security
Apple, Cisco, and AT&T have filed amicus curiae briefs in support of Microsoft's appeal of court decision that could force it to turn over email from an Irish customer to US law enforcement. Magistrate Judge James Francis IV ordered Microsoft to supply the data based on the Stored Communications Act, even though the content in question not only belongs to an Irish person but is stored on servers in Dublin. Microsoft has argued that this violates the SCA, international law, and treaties the US has signed that govern how to handle requests for data on foreign citizens.
New organization to fund open source projects that have wide importance
The Linux Foundation today announced it has formed a new project to fund and support critical elements of the global information infrastructure, namely OpenSSL. The newly-formed Core Infrastructure Initiative enables technology companies to collaboratively identify and fund open-source projects that are in need of assistance, while allowing the developers to continue their work under open-source community norms. Founding backers of the Initiative include Amazon Web Services, Cisco, Dell, Facebook, Fujitsu, Google, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, NetApp, Rackspace, VMware and The Linux Foundation.
Capital investment intended to compete against Amazon, Microsoft
Networking company Cisco is commencing an initiative to enter the cloud computing industry. The giant has announced plans to launch Cisco Cloud Services, a program similar to Amazon's distributed offering, with a capital expenditure of $1 billion over the next two years.
Patent troll sued end users of networking gear, settlement prevents further action
Networking hardware manufacturer Cisco has struck a deal with non-practicing entity Innovatio IP Ventures to settle a suit and protect commercial and potentially home users of its hardware. Together with Netgear and Motorola, have agreed to pay IP Ventures 3.2 cents for 85 million pieces of network gear, netting the patent troll $2.7 million.
Companies want easier time recouping legal fees
A collection of companies -- including Apple, Google, Yahoo, Intel, Cisco, and Facebook -- are asking the US Supreme Court for measures to help deter frivolous patent lawsuits, Bloomberg reports. In particular, the companies are seeking to change the language used to determine when a defendant can claim coverage of legal fees from a plaintiff. The current standard allows coverage only if a suit is ruled "objectively baseless" and filed in bad faith.
Patent deal reduces threat of litigation for both Cisco and Google
Google and Cisco have signed a cross-licensing agreement for each others patent portfolios. The long-term agreement, which is said to cover a "broad range of products and technologies," is said to help both companies defend themselves from future patent infringement lawsuits as well as preventing the two companies from suing each other.
Layoffs of five percent of its workforce begins in 2014
Following its quarterly financial information conference call, Cisco CEO John Chambers revealed that the Silicon Valley giant will cut 4,000 jobs, or five percent of its workforce, starting in 2014. The company announced profit of $2.8 billion on sales of $12.4 billion for its fourth quarter, beating Wall Street estimates, but falling short of the company's own guidance.
Sourcefire purchase will bolster Cisco corporate security range
Cisco has announced it has acquired Sourcefire, a company specializing in providing cybersecurity products to companies. The $2.7 billion purchase will bring the employees from the Maryland-based security firm into the Cisco Security Group, in a move that could help Cisco improve its corporate network security offerings.
Large tech companies hide funds in Cayman Islands, Switzerland
Large tech firms are coming under scrutiny over their tax avoidance measures, following the testimony of Apple executives to a US Senate Permanent Subcommittee. Google, Yahoo, Cisco, and other multinational corporations have been found to be using an assortment of tax loopholes and off-shoring in order to avoid paying governments in the US and Europe at least $100 billion.
Move part of regular program to keep workforce aligned with needs
Earlier this week, network equipment manufacturer Cisco announced a cut of 500 jobs. The move was made as part of the company's periodic reassessment of needs and manpower. Most of the positions lost relate to the company's alliance with EMC and other superfluous data center positions. Cisco's worldwide workforce totals nearly 73,000 people.
Jury finds Cisco owes XpertUniverse $70 million
A jury on Friday evening hit networking technology giant Cisco with a $70 million damages verdict for patent fraud. Reuters reported Friday that the jury found Cisco to have fraudulently obtained technology developed by XpertUniverse. Cisco was also found to have violated two XpertUniverse patents, with an additional $34,000 in damages awarded due to those claims.
Merged companies hold 30 percent of US home networking market
As expected, Belkin has finalized the deal to purchase Cisco's home networking business unit. Belkin is going to maintain the Linksys brand and all associated services, and will support Cisco's products -- including warranty support and repair. With the acquisition, Belkin now holds 30 percent of the entire US home and small business networking market.
Demand for $258 million in damages rejected by jury
Cisco has won in a patent infringement trial against patent-licensing firm VirnetX. A jury in a Texas court found in favor of Cisco Systems, confirming that it did not infringe on VirnetX Holding Corp's patents relating to secure network communications, and rejecting a demand from VirnetX for $258 million in damages.
Major tech companies wield influence on American government
Google increased the amount it spent on lobbying the US government 90 percent year-over-year in 2012, according to data compiled by Fortune. The company ended up spending $18.22 million, easily beating out any other American technology firm. Microsoft, in fact, came in second place with $8.09 million, despite likewise increasing its spending. Other major tech businesses that funneled more money toward lobbying last year included HP, Facebook, and Amazon.
Nearly $1 billion from reintroduction of federal tax credit
Networking company Cisco today reported its second quarter results for the period that concluded on January 26, 2013. Cisco reported second quarter net sales of $12.1 billion, and net income of $3.1 billion or $0.59 per share -- beating Wall Street's conservative estimates handily. The company included total tax benefits of approximately $926 million related to a tax settlement with the Internal Revenue Service from a recent reinstatement of a research tax credit at the beginning of the year.
Deal consolidates large percentage of US home networking market
Computer accessory manufacturer Belkin revealed on Thursday that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Cisco's home networking business unit, including the Linksys brand and all associated products. Belkin intends to maintain the Linksys brand, and will continue to support all of Cisco's products in the sector, including warranty support and replacement.
Israel-based company specializes in software-defined networking
Network equipment manufacturer Cisco is intending to acquire Israel-based networking software producer Intucell for $475 million. The deal would give Cisco more options to offer its customers in terms of software-defined networking, as well as access to Intucell's existing agreements with telecommunications companies such as AT&T, something that Intucell provides some of the infrastructure for.
East Carolina University claims trademark infringed by Cisco
Cisco is being sued for trademark infringement over one of its marketing campaigns. East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina has announced the start of legal proceedings in a federal court, over the use of the slogan 'Tomorrow Starts Here' in a Cisco campaign shown on television, print publications, augmented reality, and also online.
Video recommendations offered to eight app users
Cox Communications has shown off a new version of its mobile app, which it hopes will give a more personalized TV experience to customers. Jointly developed with Cisco, the new mobile application will offer access to 90 live TV channels, on demand content, personalized video recommendations, and will also function as a remote control for the Cox TV program guide, Trio.
Cisco expected to fetch far less than $500 million on the sale
According to industry sources, Cisco Systems has hired Barclays to find a buyer for its home networking division Linksys. Reportedly, Cisco is planning on divesting itself of the home router manufacturer as part of its strategy to exit consumer-level businesses while expanding in technology services, and other corporate solutions.
Cisco to buy network traffic-management software company
Cisco announced today that it would be purchasing Cariden Technologies, a privately-held traffic management software maker. The networking giant will pay about $141 million in total for Cariden, which supplies network planning and design solutions for telecoms. The move is Cisco's third major acquisition in a month.
MIT research project bought for networking know-how
Cisco has acquired cloud startup Meraki for a reported $1.2 billion. The deal, entirely in cash, sees the networking giant take control of the networking infrastructure service, which offers mid-sized organizations on-site Wi-Fi networking, security, and cloud-based management software at a relatively low cost.
Cisco records $11.9 billion in revenues
Cisco Systems reported earnings for the most recent financial quarter today, revealing quarterly revenue and earnings that beat the average Wall Street analyst estimates. The networking equipment manufacturer reported a six percent jump in revenue year-over-year, totaling $11.9 billion. Wall Street had expected Cisco to log about $11.77 billion in revenue for the quarter.
Trial ended after Huawei removed offending code
Networking equipment manufacturer Cisco is accusing competitor Huawei Technologies of misstating facts doing a 2003 copyright infringement case, and has released segments of what was said from a previously sealed document. Cisco wait it was revealing parts of an expert's report "so the world could learn what really happened."
Location data analysis acquisition to provide location intelligence
Networking gear maker Cisco has acquired ThinkSmart Technologies. The company announced the acquisition in a post on Cisco's blog. Financial specifics on the deal are as yet unavailable.
Verizon agrees to pay TiVo at least $250 million and the two cross-license patents
The legal patent dispute between TiVo and Verizon has been settled, with the latter paying the former about $250.4 million and monthly licensing fees. Verizon will fork over $100 million initially and then pay the remaining amount in quarterly installments until it's paid off by July 2018. The monthly fees will only apply to FiOS DVR users above a certain level.
European orders falling, will continue to fall
Cisco announced results for the most recent quarter last night, with the computer networking equipment company revealing earnings that slightly outperformed analysts expectations. As The New York Times reports, the router maker is cautiously optimistic regarding its future but maintains that it is too early to call the most recent results a trend. The European market, in particular, represents something of a challenge for Cisco going forward.
Two percent of workforce to go in streamlining effort
Cisco announced today that it will be cutting 1,300 positions from its workforce as part of an effort to streamline its organizational structure and reduce costs. As Bloomberg reports, the two percent workforce reduction was announced in an emailed statement today. The move is part of a continuing effort by Cisco to retool itself for the modern tech environment.
E2700, E3500, E4500 'cloud' routers affected, rollback possible
Router and switch maker Cisco recently pushed an automatic firmware update on some of its routers that forced users to sign up for a new service, and also mandated a less-private "shrink wrap" EULA at the same time, outraged users report. Internet forums lit up about both the firmware update and privacy document, which suggested Cisco could track and share information about users' Internet usage, such as sites visited, data quantities sent and received, and "other information" in the interest of improving service quality.
Invites developers to design apps for cloud platform
In a trio of related announcements today, Cisco unveiled a new next-generation Wi-Fi router, a media sharing hub, and an ecosystem meant to support both devices. The new Linksys Smart Wi-Fi Router and Universal Media Connector will work in conjunction to allow users greater device interoperability, at speeds up to three times faster than current Wi-Fi routers. Cisco hopes that the two new devices will find support from developers, and the company has also rolled out a new community aimed at nurturing an app ecosystem to take advantage of the two new devices' capabilities.
Cisco knew Cius had no chance well before dropping it
Cisco knew late last year that its enterprise-oriented Cius tablet stood no chance against Apple's iPad, long before the company discontinued support for the tablet. Speaking with reporters from Network World, among others, Cisco CEO John Chambers said that the company should have killed off the Cius nine months ago. The company, Chambers said, will continue to focus its efforts on developing collaboration software across multiple platforms.
TiVo protects rights to patents by using them to countersue DVR maker Cisco
Very soon after Cisco sued TiVo to challenge TiVo's claims to patents used in DVRs, TiVo has gone ahead and sued Cisco back. According to a Tuesday report, there are four patents in contention and TiVo is involved in several lawsuits against a number of companies that bought the allegedly offending DVRs from Cisco. Cisco's Scientific Atlanta arm sells boxes to cable providers that include AT&T, Time Warner Cable, and Verizon Communications.
Cisco claims TiVo unfair in licensing its patents
Cisco has filed a complaint against TiVo, alleging that the DVR maker will not grant broad licenses to its technology because such licenses would decrease TiVo's leverage with regard to patent lawsuits. The suit claims that TiVo is wrongfully alleging that Cisco's DVR offerings constitute violations of patents TiVo holds. Analysts familiar with the proceedings contend that a victory for Cisco would represent a significant financial burden for TiVo.
Cisco forecasts global IP traffic at 1.3 zettabytes by 2016
In its annual visual networking index forecast, network equipment maker Cisco expects Internet Protocol traffic to increase dramatically over the next four years. Cisco forecasts an annual compound growth rate of 29 percent between now and 2016, with global IP traffic reaching the equivalent of 38 million DVDs per hour in four years' time.
Consumer device popularity spells doom for enterprise tablet
In a blog post this week, Cisco revealed that the company will no longer be producing the Cius. The enterprise-focused tablet was released last year but never caught on with business consumers, who are increasingly opting for Apple's iPad, and other competitors to a lesser extent, as a mobile computing solution.
Would continue global R&D expansion
Apple is one of several parties in talks with Russia's Skolkovo technology park about possible research and development facilities there, according to local publication Izvestia. Other interested companies are said to include Google and Facebook; agreements are reportedly already in place for firms such as Microsoft, IBM, General Electric, and Cisco. Skolkovo's organizers are said to be aiming at making the park a Russian equivalent of Silicon Valley.
ZTE contract for embargoed US gear to Iran found
China's second biggest telecommunications gear maker ZTE was found to have sold embargoed US computer equipment to Iran. A Tuesday Reuters report claimed that documents show ZTE sold some computer gear as part of a $10.5 million supply contract to a unit that controls Iranian telecoms. The documents are dated June 30, 2011 and explain how Iran got sophisticated US hardware despite sanctions against such transactions.
ATT femtocell is wide open by default
AT&T's Cisco-made PS3 jailbreaking, has posted explorations that have shown it might be dangerously open. Connecting to the WAN Ethernet port lets users run with root-level privileges on the mini, virtual cell site's Linux OS without a password. Although data going out is routed to a specific AT&T connection, the full access means anyone can change the IP to somewhere else.
Linksys Smart Wi-Fi Routers get speed and software
Cisco's Linksys badge unveiled a trio of new Smart Wi-Fi routers with updates both for software and the pure technology underneath. The EA4500, EA3500, and EA2700 all support apps that link into the Cisco Connect Cloud web portal to not just administer the router from outside the home network but control attached devices. Cisco has suggested home theater devices like TVs, and even home appliances, could be controlled as long as they're on the same router.
Cash would have declined in 2011 without Apple
Apple leads US corporations in terms of cash reserves, notes Moody’s Investors Service’s Richard Lane. In all US corporations are said to hold about $1.2 trillion. Apple controls $97.6 billion; other tech companies in the top five include Microsoft with $51.7 billion, Cisco with $46.7 billion, and Google with $44.6 billion. Drugmaker Pfizer is fifth.
Google said looking for Motorola set-top buyer
Google is already looking to sell the set-top box business it will get as part of the $12.5 billion buy of Motorola Mobility, the New York Post claimed. In August, during the announcement of the purchase, the plan was to make the business work under Google's tutelage. Cable operators have been slow to buy Motorola set-tops ever since the Google buy was announced.
WPS allegedly resisting brute force attacks
The Wi-Fi Alliance has responded to word of security exploits in Wi-Fi Protected Setup with a statement alluding to a fix. It claimed to The Verge that its test routine and certification now made sure that Wi-Fi devices "effectively resist" brute, PIN code-based attacks. How that would resolve the gap, and whether or not a patch would be available for those devices that had already shipped, wasn't mentioned.
Commercial NGHs coming over next 12 months
Industry association Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) revealed on Thursday that some of the biggest carriers in the world have successfully tested Next Generation Hotspots (NGH). Wi-Fi access to these hubs is much simpler, and the second half of 2012 will see more tests that involve more advanced features. The first commercial NGHs will be built over the course of the next 10 months.
Cisco says MS-Skype needs tougher oversight
Cisco has posted a formal appeal of the EU approval for Microsoft's acquisition of Skype. The networking giant accepted the merger on a basic level, but it wanted the European Commission to have imposed interoperability requirements. Making Microsoft adhere to standards would prevent it from trying to "control the future of video communications," Cisco said.
Cisco annual report shows mobile data spikes
Cisco in a yearly state-of-affairs report on Tuesday showed both a rapid growth in data and aggressive predictions for the next four years. Mobile data use had grown 133 percent over the course of 2011, which it didn't see slowing down. As mobile viewers got more devices as well as faster connections, video use would become 70 percent of mobile data and lead to 18 times more data used per year in 2016, at 10.8 exabytes every month.
Linksys Powerline AV gets 3 new models
Cisco's Linksys badge brought out three new powerline networking kits for those who prefer or need mostly wired links. The PLEK400 one-port kit, PLSK400 four-port kit, and PLW400 wireless extender all run on the HomePlug standard and can reach up to 200Mbps. Linksys is vowing a small design that makes it practical to hook up other devices to the local wall outlet.
World IPv6 Day to launch standard is June 6
The IPv6 Internet addressing standard will get a more formal launch by its backers on June 6, which is being devoted World IPv6 Day. Seven global ISPs will back the new standard then, including AT&T, Comcast and Time Warner. Also onboard are heavily trafficked websites, including Facebook, Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft's Bing, as well as hardware makers Cisco and D-Link.
Cisco stops selling Umi video conferencing gear
Cisco has stopped sales of its Umi video conferencing system Umi that has been price-dropped and re-branded for business use, SAI learned. While an official announcement to this effect hasn't been made by Cisco, a spokesperson confirmed to the source Cisco has stopped selling the system. When the system launched, it was expensive at $600 and included a 720p camera, controller and set-top box. In March, it was discounted to $400.