Australian government research agency CSIRO has settled its landmark WLAN patent case against 14 major technology companies and will be entitled to millions in royalties.
The CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Research Organization) was awarded a patent in 1996, which the organization had argued entitles it to royalties from any company that incorporates the 802.11 wireless standard into their devices.
The organization will be entitled to one-off compensation payments and/or on-going royalties from the companies involved, including some of the world\'s biggest technology firms such as Microsoft, Intel, Belkin and Dell.
After a long-running legal battle, which the CSIRO launched in 2005, the last of the 14 companies agreed to negotiate on Monday, the Sydney Morning Herald said. The CSIRO had been prohibited from broadcasting the settlement, and the news has just leaked out.
CSIRO deputy CEO Mike Whelan told the Herald the settlement will result in the largest IP payout the organization had ever seen, and that the money would be reinvested into further research.
Asus, Toshiba, Netgear, D-Link, SMC, Accton, 3Com, Buffalo and Nintendo have also settled with CSIRO. Hewlett Packard reached a settlement earlier this month.