Beginning Next Week: InsideCounsel will become part of Corporate Counsel. Bringing these two industry-leading websites together will now give you comprehensive coverage of the full spectrum of issues affecting today's General Counsel at companies of all sizes. You will continue to receive expert analysis on key issues including corporate litigation, labor developments, tech initiatives and intellectual property, as well as Women, Influence & Power in Law (WIPL) professional development content. Plus we'll be serving all ALM legal publications from one interconnected platform, powered by, giving you easy access to additional relevant content from other InsideCounsel sister publications.

To prevent a disruption in service, you will be automatically redirected to the new site next week. Thank you for being a valued InsideCounsel reader!


Google, Cisco forge patent cross-licensing deal

The two tech giants have agreed to license each other's patents and ensure the lack of litigation needed in the future

Technology companies are renowned for their bitter and expensive patent litigation and legal battles over who owns what licenses and how they are used. Some of the biggest names -- Apple and Samsung for two -- have been embroiled in patent lawsuits for years in courts in many countries as they try to edge each other out of the mobile device market. But a unique reconciliation of sorts has been made between Google and Cisco -- two other giants -- who have come to terms in order to relieve themselves of future patent problems.

The two companies signed an agreement that allows the each to license the other's patents in a cross-licensing deal that will essentially make it less likely that either violates patents and must bring the other to court. In such an agreement, both companies will be avoiding the exorbitant fees of patent litigation, and they will both have access -- for likely high fees -- to the other's patents.  

Reuters reported Allen Lo, Google's deputy general counsel for patents, as stating: "We're pleased to enter into this cross-license, and we welcome discussions with any company interested in a similar arrangement." 

All in all, it seems like a win-win. And, indeed, Google is not experimenting with Cisco in this regard. The company has forged this agreement shortly after forming a long-term agreement in a similar vein with Samsung. In short, these cross-licensing deals afford Google assurance that it will not be wrongfully encroached upon by other tech conglomerates, but it also assures it of retaining its billions that it aims to devote to research and development of new technologies.


Further reading:

Oracle and Google headed for IP showdown with major implications

Google and Samsung sign cross-licensing agreement

Nokia could take on Google for mapping patents

Contributing Author

author image

Juliana Kenny

Juliana Kenny is a contributor to, covering a range of topics including patent litigation, conflict mineral laws, executive compensation, and antitrust regulation. Juliana earned B.A.s...

Bio and more articles

Join the Conversation

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.