Business

Feast your eyes on the public-but-not-so-public Apple-HTC contract (or not)

I have the much-discussed Apple-HTC cross-licensing contract in my greasy little digital fingers. It’s a powerful document that has kiboshed upwards of 40 lawsuits between the two companies.

If only I could read some of it.

Here’s what I know after reading through the contract:

  • It’s between Apple and HTC
  • Apple is in Cupertino
  • HTC is in Taiwan
  • “Apple Products” means Apple products
  • The companies are agreeing not to sue each other and to settle or dismiss all existing lawsuits
  • The license is royalty-free EXCEPT as set forth in Section 6.2 … which is blanked out.
  • Even if Apple sells its patents, HTC still has a license to them
  • The license does not include any Apple design patents
  • HTC has to pay Apple electronically, 45 days after the end of each quarter
  • The contract has a ten-year life-span

Exciting, isn’t it, this massive revealing of deep, dark corporate secrets? Here’s what I don’t know:

  • Exactly what products are covered
  • What “HTC Android Mobile Communications Devices” means
  • What features “Mobile Communications Devices” must have to be part of this agreement
  • How much HTC is paying for the license

That’s pretty much it, although the contract runs to 143 pages. One of the terms — 13.9 to be exact — states that it is to be entirely confidential. That’s out of the window now, but not really. Everything important is still hidden.

Which is pretty much as expected.

Here’s the document:

Apple-HTC Settlement (Redacted)


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