Google and some of its many Android partners have announced a new agreement called PAX, with an aim to defend themselves against software patent lawsuits.
The group, which also includes electronics giants like Samsung and LG, have agreed on sharing patents covering "Android and Google Applications" on any device that meets Android's compatibility requirements. The patents will be shared for free, and any can company can decide to join the group anytime. This agreement was made to expand the openness of Android ecosystem.
While the actual name of the agreement is the "Android Networked Cross-License," it is being called PAX, which means peace in Latin.
Jamie Rosenberg, an Android business VP with Google explained the reason for this name saying "It is with a hope for such benefits that we are announcing our newest patent licensing initiative focusing on patent peace, which we call PAX."
It is not yet known what kind of patents will be shared or what threats these companies wish to defend against. However, the agreement should help participants against software patent lawsuits. The PAX group believes that it will materially reduce patent risk.
The agreement could be really beneficial for both Google and Samsung.
In the case of the former, this agreement will open up the Android ecosystem to smaller companies that may want to make a device but is afraid of litigation. While Samsung being the company which makes and sells more Android devices than anyone in the group, it will make harder for patent trolls to target the Korean giant.