Google picks up Magnolia Broadband's MTD patent portfolio

The company says that Google acquired more than 50 of its patents related to Mobile Transmit Diversity, including those involved in improving network capacity and device battery life.

Google has acquired more than 50 patents from Magnolia Broadband, a company focused on improving scalability and capacity across the mobile space.

According to Magnolia, the patents come from its Mobile Transmit Diversity portfolio, which includes a host of technologies related to increasing mobile network capacity, expanding coverage, improving uplink transmission speeds, and increasing a device's battery life.

The terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

According to Magnolia CEO Osmo Hautanen, the software Google's newly acquired patents relate to can be "embedded into any mobile broadband device." The software is sold to mobile device vendors and chipset companies, according to Hautanen.

Interestingly, Google didn't acquire the software, which remains under the ownership of Magnolia. Whether the companies entered into a licensing agreement, however, was not divulged.

A host of major companies have been going on a patent-buying spree lately. Last year, Apple and Research In Motion were among a few companies that bought Nortel's patents for $4.5 billion. Microsoft recently closed a deal to acquire about 800 patents from AOL for $1 billion. Even Google's $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility was motivated by a desire to own that company's patent portfolio.

Who can blame any of the companies? Over the last couple of years, the mobile space has exploded with patent lawsuits, forcing firms to find protection wherever possible.

CNET has contacted Google for comment on the patent portfolio purchase. We will update this story when we have more information.

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