Google received “thousands” of submissions to its experimental Patent Purchase Promotion, which launched in April and closed last week. Out of that rather vague number, the company bought 28 percent of the patents it deemed were “relevant” to its business, according to Kurt Brasch, senior product licensing manager.
The program, which offered a chance for anybody to sell patents to Google at a price set by the patent holder, was an experiment in keeping patents out of the hands of trolls.
The number of submissions was “well beyond what we expected,” says Brasch. “We were very, very happy with the overall program.”
Some other stats Google shared:
- The median price of submissions was about $150,000.
- There were several submissions priced at more than $1 billion, including one for $3.5 billion
- One half of the submissions came in at under $100,000
- The lowest price Google paid for a patent was $3,000; the highest was $250,000
- 25 percent of all submissions came from individual inventors, the rest from operating companies
- Of the 75 percent from operating companies, about a third were handled by brokers
Google was surprised at the big response from both individual inventors and brokers. It also received many inquiries from operating companies who wanted to know how the program was progressing.
“Clearly there is interest in what we learned,” says Brasch, lessons that the company intends to share after it has a chance to more closely analyze the data.
Freelance journalist Tam Harbert has covered technology and business for more than 20 years. Based in Washington, D.C., Harbert says her favorite type of article explains how public policy affects the technology business, or vice versa. She has launched, edited, and written for publications targeting engineers, IT managers, investors, and corporate executives. Harbert has won more than a dozen awards for her work, most recently two awards (2014) from the American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE) and the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA). She has also received the Jesse H. Neal Award for op-ed writing.