OS News delivers word that Microsoft has just bought most of AOL's patents for just over $1 billion. The software giant bought 800 of AOL's 1,100 patents, while also taking up a license for the remainder 300 AOL patents. Additionally, Microsoft also scooped up all patents owned by AOL subsidiary Netscape. The patent span a wide variety of categories, including search, web browsing, multimedia/streaming, security, advertising, content generation/management, social networking and mapping.
"The agreement with Microsoft represents the culmination of a robust auction process for our patent portfolio," said Tim Armstrong, AOL's chairman and CEO in the press release, "We continue to hold a valuable patent portfolio as highlighted by the license we entered into with Microsoft. The combined sale and licensing arrangement unlocks current dollar value for our shareholders and enables AOL to continue to aggressively execute on our strategy to create long-term shareholder value."
"This is a valuable portfolio that we have been following for years and analyzing in detail for several months," added Brad Smith, Microsoft's general counsel and executive vice president of legal and corporate affairs, "AOL ran a competitive auction and by participating, Microsoft was able to achieve our two primary goals: obtaining a durable license to the full AOL portfolio and ownership of certain patents that complement our existing portfolio."
Another acquisition in the news today is that Facebook bought Instagram for $1 billion:
In its biggest acquisition, Facebook is paying $1 billion for the hugely popular Instagram mobile photo-sharing app maker in a move that broadens its business and absorbs a potential rival.
Unlike other purchases it has made, Facebook's founder and chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, said Instagram would continue to operate as an independent company.