Google Beefs Up Patent Portfolio with Wireless Patents from Proxim

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With Google Fiber, Android Operating Systems, and Motorola Phones, the business of Google is becoming as much about moving data across networks as it is in sending search data across networks. I noticed in Google’s patent assignments today a new entry which shows more movement in this direction.

Google acquired 58 patents from Proxim Wireless Corporation in an assignment noted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) as having been executed on July 9th, 2012, and recorded on August 7th, 2012. The USPTO doesn’t include any of the financial details of the transaction. Proxim Wireless still has a number of patents left in their portfolio, and the Proxim Wireless website is still online.

According to a press release for Proxim, the company has been engaged in the following types of business:

Using a combination of WLAN, Wi-Fi Mesh and Point-to-Point backhaul technologies, Proxim enables a wide variety of fixed and mobile applications, including:

  • Security and surveillance – Systems including video surveillance, gunshot location and perimeter security
  • Intelligent Transportation Systems – Enabling smarter traffic solutions with high uptime wireless solutions
  • Backhaul – High performance wireless point-to-point backhaul connections for carriers and wireless ISP’s
  • Last-mile connectivity – Wi-Fi access for both enterprises and consumers
  • Enterprise WLAN – Wireless access and building-to-building campus connectivity

Will the patents from this assignment play a role in the roll-out of Google Fiber? Is the technology involved in this transaction part of the small details that will help make the Fiber project one that will work?

An announcement was made last week that Google will extend its network outside of Kansas City to include Westwood, Westwood Hills and Mission Woods in Johnson County, Kansas. That’s the first announcement of Google Fiber being expanded outside Kansas City to date.

Many of the (early) patents involved in the transaction is an intellectual property developed by Metricom, which ran one of the pioneering wireless internet service providers in the country in Ricochet, though Proxim has continued to develop wireless technologies that compete with other suppliers today.

Here are the patents listed in the USPTO assignment database as being assigned to Google:

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2 thoughts on “Google Beefs Up Patent Portfolio with Wireless Patents from Proxim”

  1. Hi Bill,
    Intelligent Transportation Systems above all interests me the most, especially as Security and surveillance, High performance wireless and Last-mile connectivity play their roles in opening up a network that’s safe and available to all.

    Could Intelligent Transportation Systems allow for Google to emerge not as a search engine but instead as a powerful recommendation engine based on geo-positioning and auto search.

    As always Bill this article’s amazing and thank you. I hope the new job is going well, all the best.

    Incidently I thought I’d share with you some of the interesting things coming out of Disney – particularly gesture control…


  2. Matdwright – I think you’re on to something there with the “recommendation engine” idea. It seems like this is where a lot of online services are going. they want to be able to predict what you want to watch, who you might know, what pages you might be interested in. Maybe Google wants “in” on some of that action too!

    Bill, I recently found your blog and I’ve found your articles very interesting! Keep up the good work!

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