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HTC Buy Shores Up Patent DefensesHTC Buy Shores Up Patent Defenses

Handset maker shells out $18.5M for Dashwire, a cloud services vendor with an impressive patent portfolio

Sarah Thomas

August 5, 2011

2 Min Read
HTC Buy Shores Up Patent Defenses

High Tech Computer Corp. (HTC) (Taiwan: 2498) announced Friday its America Holding division has agreed to buy cloud services provider Dashwire Inc. for up to $18.5 million.

The acquisition will help HTC expand its cloud-synch offerings and augment its Sense user interface with Dashwire's mix of Internet applications, including mobile instant messaging. The Seattle-based startup currently provides Internet storage capabilities to carriers, handset makers and retailers.

Importantly, it will also give HTC access to Dashwire's extensive portfolio of patents that it acquired from Intellectual Ventures Management LLC .

Why this matters
The acquisition is strategic to HTC for two reasons. First, the Internet-based capabilities of Dashwire will be helpful to HTC as it attempts to differentiate from Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) and the bevy of handset makers focused on Android.

Second, and equally as important, Dashwire's patents will help HTC defend against Apple and others in the court room. On HTC's second-quarter earnings call, CEO Peter Chou dismissed concerns over a recent ruling that HTC infringed on two Apple patents, saying that it was just the result of being successful. Nevertheless, more patent suits are eminent, and HTC recognizes the need to build its own patent defense. (See Handset Makers Air Patent Grievances and Apple Wins Patent Victory Over HTC.)

This is the second acquisition HTC has made in the past month to help with both content and patent protection. In July, it announced plans to acquire graphics company S3 Graphics for $300 million for access to its imaging technology and 235 patents. (See HTC Buys a Patent Power Play.)

For more
The patent wars are escalating and could take a toll on the handset market. Read up on the latest developments below.

  • Synchronoss Wins Patent Dispute

  • Patent Conspiracy Theorists

  • Wireless Competition's Courtside Seats

  • Google Slams Android Patent Attackers

  • Apple vs. Android Patent Spat Goes Global

  • Apple Sues HTC

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

About the Author(s)

Sarah Thomas

Director, Women in Comms

Sarah Thomas's love affair with communications began in 2003 when she bought her first cellphone, a pink RAZR, which she duly "bedazzled" with the help of superglue and her dad.

She joined the editorial staff at Light Reading in 2010 and has been covering mobile technologies ever since. Sarah got her start covering telecom in 2007 at Telephony, later Connected Planet, may it rest in peace. Her non-telecom work experience includes a brief foray into public relations at Fleishman-Hillard (her cussin' upset the clients) and a hodge-podge of internships, including spells at Ingram's (Kansas City's business magazine), American Spa magazine (where she was Chief Hot-Tub Correspondent), and the tweens' quiz bible, QuizFest, in NYC.

As Editorial Operations Director, a role she took on in January 2015, Sarah is responsible for the day-to-day management of the non-news content elements on Light Reading.

Sarah received her Bachelor's in Journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She lives in Chicago with her 3DTV, her iPad and a drawer full of smartphone cords.

Away from the world of telecom journalism, Sarah likes to dabble in monster truck racing, becoming part of Team Bigfoot in 2009.

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