Google and LG to share patents through 2023

November 5, 2014
A model shows a Google Chrome operating system-based computer made by LG Electronics Inc. at an outlet in Seoul on Dec. 18, 2013. (Yonhap)

A model shows a Google Chrome operating system-based computer made by LG Electronics Inc. at an outlet in Seoul on Dec. 18, 2013. (Yonhap)

SEOUL (Yonhap) — LG Electronics Inc. said Wednesday it has signed an agreement with Google Inc. to grant each other the right to mutually exploit their patents, a move seen as a way to avert patent infringement suits.

The cross-licensing agreement, signed by the two companies, includes sharing the rights for not only the existing patents, but also those that will be newly registered until 2023, they said.

“(The deal) will reinforce our relationship (with Google) in making innovative products and technology development, which will eventually contribute to creating values that will change the lives of consumers,” said Kim Jung-hwan, the vice president of LG Electronics’ patent center.

The agreement will provide LG Electronics legal grounds to utilize Google’s software patents such as data processing and information security, while the U.S. firm will get access to LG’s exclusive rights to hardware devices including flagship smartphones, LG said.

Allan Lo, the head of intellectual property at Google said the deal will enable the two firms “to focus more on developing products and services for customers.”

It is seen by analysts as a move to secure a safety net against patent infringement lawsuits, especially from Apple Inc. and Microsoft Corp, regarding Google’s Android operating system.

The LG-Google contract comes months after South Korean tech behemoth Samsung Electronics Co. clinched a similar deal with Google in January this year.

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