The smartphone patent wars have heated up further, with Microsoft and Nokia hitting back at claims by Google that they are feeding mobile patents to a "troll" company that aims to extract billions of pounds of payments from handset makers and so push up prices.
In a regulatory complaint filed on Thursday evening with the European Commission, the US Department of Justice and the US Federal Trade Commission, Google says that the two companies "are colluding to raise the costs of mobile devices for consumers, creating patent trolls that sidestep promises both companies have made. They should be held accountable, and we hope our complaint spurs others to look into these practices."
Google is understood to be concerned that a company called Mosaid, which is building a large patent portfolio, will begin suing makers of handsets running Google's Android mobile software over claims that it infringes them. Last September Mosaid, based in Ottawa, took control of 2,000 Nokia patents, including a large number deemed essential to various phone standards. Microsoft is also understood to have given it control of a significant number of patents.