Apple-Backed Patent Consortium Sues Google, Major Android Manufacturers

Shane Cole | Apple Insider | November 1, 2013

A patent holding company backed by Apple, Microsoft, Blackberry, Sony, and Ericsson has filed the first round of lawsuits based on patents the group won at auction from seminal telecom company Nortel.

The company, Rockstar Consortium, on Thursday filed eight patent infringement suits in the Eastern District of Texas against Google, Samsung, Huawei, ZTE, LG, HTC, Pantech, and Asus, according to FOSS Patents. The list of manufacturers represents every major Android OEM apart from Sony, which is a part owner of Rockstar.

AdWords under attack

The case against Google is based on a family of patents covering an "Associative Search Engine," and more specifically contextual advertising within search results, the first of which was filed in 1997 — the year before Google's inception.