Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) purchased a trove of mobile-related patents from Hewlett-Packard and its Palm subsidiary to bulk up its mobile patent portfolio. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Qualcomm said the portfolio includes 1,400 granted patents and pending patent applications from the U.S., and approximately 1,000 granted patents and pending patent applications from other countries, covering technologies that "include fundamental mobile operating system techniques." The patents are from HP's Palm, IPAQ and Bitfone patent portfolio.
HP famously purchased Palm and its patents in 2010 with an eye toward selling phones and tablets running the company's webOS operating system. However, under former HP CEO Léo Apotheker, the company shuttered its smartphone business shortly after buying Palm for $1.2 billion.
Earlier this month, HP said it will begin selling smartphones again, starting first with a pair of phablets in India. That HP is going to sell the two devices--the 6-inch Slate6 VoiceTab and the 7-inch Slate7 VoiceTab--in India first is notable considering a recent report that Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is struggling in the Indian market, and as a result is preparing to rerelease its 8 GB iPhone 4 in the country.
Qualcomm, the largest mobile chipset maker, derives billions of dollars in revenue each year from not only selling chips but licensing patents to mobile technologies, including CDMA and LTE. The HP/Palm patent trove likely will only boost its licensing business.
Qualcomm into the list of top 10 U.S. patent awardees during 2013, while Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Apple both jumped into the top 20, according to IFI Claims Patent Services.
The analyst firm examined U.S. Patent and Trademark Office data for calendar year 2013 to come up with the rankings. Qualcomm moved up the list of patent winners during the year, going from 17th place in 2012 to ninth in 2013. The San Diego-based chipmaker was assigned 2,103 patents, or 62 percent more patents than it got during 2012.
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