Google is facing a $125m lawsuit after a jury decided that its Android operating system infringed on intellectual property owned by patent holding firm SimpleAir.
Texas-based SimpleAir Holdings owns eight US patents relating to technology and specialises in mobile devices. Its portfolio includes US patent 7,035,914, which is described as: "A system and method for data communication connecting online networks with online and offline computers."
SimpleAir claims Google Cloud Messaging (GCM) and Android Cloud to Device Messaging (C2DM) platforms infringe these patents. Through GCM and C2DM, app developers can enable instant notifications in their Android mobile applications, pushing messages to users via Google's platforms.
SimpleAir settled with Apple and RIM in 2012 on the same grounds and is also in the process of suing HTC, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Motorola, all of which produce their own Android-based handsets that make use of GCM and C2DM.
The jury presiding on a week-long trial in Texas agreed unanimously that Google's products infringed on SimpleAir's patents, but was unable to agree on the price Google would have to pay. In a statement, SimpleAir said it would push for damages of $125m from Google.
SimpleAir operates as a holding company for its patents, a practice seen by some as "patent trolling". The company defines itself as an "inventor-owned technology licensing company", and adds that it has "licensed its inventions to many leading technology companies".
V3 contacted Google for its comment on the case, but had not received a reply at the time of publishing.
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