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BT sues Google, alleges widespread patent infringement

December 19, 2011 |  1:16 pm

Google headquarters

British Telecommunications, better known as BT, has accused Google of infringing six of its patents in a lawsuit filed in the U.S.

The company -- which has customers in more than 170 countries and offers land-line and mobile phone service as well as Internet TV and IT services -- alleges in its suit that a number of Google products violate its patents, including Google's search engine, the Android mobile operating system and Android Market app store, Gmail, Google+, Google Books, Docs, Maps, Music, Places, Offers and advertising operations.

Google plans to fight the suit, saying in an emailed statement: "We believe these claims are groundless and we will vigorously defend ourselves against them."

The suit, which was first reported by the website Foss Patents and filed in U.S. District Court in Wilmington, Del., didn't specify what sort of damages BT is looking for, but did ask for an injunction against the products it accuses of infringing its patents.

The six patents BT accuses Google of violating cover broad technologies, such as products that tailor what information they present based on the location a user is in, as well as how user location and profile information is stored and accessed.

The BT suit is one of many Google is grappling with. The tech giant is dealing with a patent battle against Oracle, a suit from EBay/PayPal and suits from Apple and Microsoft directed at Google's hardware partners.

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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles

Nathan Olivarez-Giles on Google+

Twitter.com/nateog

Photo: A Google sign outside the tech giant's headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. Credit: Clay McLachlan / Reuters

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