Certain InterDigital subsidiaries will receive a $375 million cash payment from Intel in exchange for handing over roughly 1,700 patents and patent applications related to 3G, Long Term Evolution (LTE), and 802.11 wireless technologies. Intel plans to use its newly acquired wireless patents to help support its strategic investments in the mobile segment, the Santa Clara chip maker said. By adding to its already large and diverse patent portfolio, Intel also puts itself in better position to avoid costly lawsuits.
It's an obvious win for InterDigital, which develops, markets, and licenses all kinds of advanced wireless technologies. InterDigital has built up a portfolio of around 20,000 patents over the past three decades, and is now averaging around 1,000 new patents each year.
Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy told InfoWorld that this deal marked "an opportunity to add some value to our patent portfolio. That's over and above what we have."
Like it or not, patent law is a game companies are forced to play. According to The Street, InterDigital earlier this year had decided to concentrate its efforts on litigation and further licensing its patents to beef up revenue, so it's a bit of a surprise the company decided to sell off a portion of its patents outright.