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Intellectual Ventures sues Motorola over cellphone patents

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The mobile patent wars have just been escalated sharply, as patent-holding firm Intellectual Ventures filed suit against Motorola Mobility earlier today. IV claims that it's been trying to reach license terms with Motorola for some time and that negotiations failed, resulting in the current litigation. It's the first high-profile suit we've seen come directly from IV — the company has previously used a variety of shell companies to do its dirty work, and it's traditionally shied away from litigation entirely. What's more, the timeline is extremely strange: IV has famously signed blanket patent licenses with other major players like Apple, Microsoft, and Google — and Google is set to acquire Motorola within the year. Whether or not Google's license will cover its new acquisition is obviously of some concern — we'll see if Larry Page steps in to clear this one up.