Google Just Made It A Lot Cheaper For Apple To Buy Another Big Bag Of Patents

In reaction to Google’s decision to buy Motorola, the stock of Interdigital fell 14% yesterday. It’s down another 6% this morning.

Interdigital put itself on the block after watch Apple, Google, and Microsoft fight over the patents of Nortel. Its CEO came out and said it had a strong patent portfolio than Nortel, suggesting it was going to sell for more than $4.5 billion.

Stories started leaking about Google and Apple revving up for another patent bidding war over Interdigital, sending the company’s stock soaring.

Anything’s possible, but it sure looks like Google isn’t going to buy Interdigital’s patents after it spent $12.5 on Motorola.

If Apple or Microsoft or any other company had interest in Interdigital, the company is a lot cheaper now. And if its patents have any value in the ongoing mobile patent wars, this could be a problem for Google.

Alternatively, Google’s acquisition of Motorola could neutralize the whole patent war thing. If Google really plans on protecting Android partners, then it’s not like HTC and Samsung need to buy Interdigital for patents. And if Apple thinks Motorola’s patent portfolio is strong, it may pull back on its lawsuits, and spending billions for more patents wouldn’t make any sense.

Regardless of what happens between Apple, Google, and whoever else, it’s clear that Interdigital is going to sell for less than it hoped — if it sells at all.

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Photo: Google Finance


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