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Google has accused rivals Microsoft and Apple of buying up technology patents in a bid to hold back Android.


 Google patent Microsoft Apple mobile phone Google Android business
Google's bids for a pool of wireless patents were based on mathematical constants, say sources. The portfolio of 6,000 patents was auctioned to realise some value from the assets of bankrupt telecoms firm Nortel. During the sale, Google's bids were based on pi, other constants and the distance between the Earth and the Sun. Google lost the auction as a consortium including Apple and Microsoft made the winning bid of $4.5bn.


 Google Apple Microsoft auction patent mathematics constant
Patents are supposed to be good for innovation, protecting an inventor from having their ideas ripped off by unscrupulous imitators.


 patent open source progress improvement software
Search giant Google has patented the design of its augmented-reality glasses, known as Project Glass.


 Google patent Project Glass augmented reality glasses
For the first time, individuals and companies that do not themselves make anything - commonly known as "patent trolls" - are bringing the majority of U.S. patent lawsuits, according to a study by a California law professor.


 patent USA lawsuit litigious