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Qualcomm acquires patents from HP

January 23
11:18 PM 2014

Qualcomm said it had bought patents from Hewlett-Packard, Gigaom reported. The deal, which comprised 2,400 issued and pending patents, also included patents from Palm, the defunct handset manufacturer that HP purchased four years ago in a $1.2 billion deal. HP, however, did not succeed in reviving the handset maker, the report said.

The acquisition was announced by the  mobile chipmaker but the company did not provide the price of the deal or other details. Qualcomm, however, said that majority of the patents were issued in the US and that the patents involved "technologies that include fundamental mobile operating system techniques."

The report said the acquisition would most probably have an effect on the continuing smartphone patent wars. The ongoing battles have been taken to a new level after a consortium backed by Apple engaged in a lawsuit campaign recently targeting various Android handset makers, Gigaom reported.

The statement from Qualcomm also said that the patent acquisition will increase its "industry-leading mobile patent portfolio and will enable the company to offer even more value to current and future licensees."

The report said Qualcomm has had a controversial history of capitalizing its patent portfolio, citing the company's continuing legal issue with Broadcom which eventually caused an appeals court to declare that the chipmaker had abused the monopoly it held on what are known as standards-essential "FRAND" patents.

As far as HP is concerned, the deal could indicate that the company was able to get back a good portion of its Palm investment, the report said.

A report from The Associated Press said the acquisition of Palm was one of the big purchases that have continued to haunt HP. The other two included the technology consulting service EDS and business software maker Autonomy. HP wrote down the acquisition of Autonomy in 2012, claiming that it was the victim of fraud.

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