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Business News

Google censured by EU for abusing mobile phone patents

Google was rapped across the knuckles by European regulators yesterday as its Motorola Mobility business, which makes phones running Google's Android software, was attacked for abusing its dominant market position against rival Apple.

Morotola had sought an injunction against Apple in Germany over patents on technology essential to maintaining mobile phone standards. Holders of these so-called "standard essential patents" are generally obliged to license them to rivals on fair terms.

The EU competition commissioner, Joaquin Almunia, said: "The protection of intellectual property is a cornerstone of innovation and growth. But so is competition. I think that companies should spend their time innovating and competing on the merits of the products they offer – not misusing their intellectual property rights to hold up competitors to the detriment of innovation and consumer choice."

An EU investigation into Motorolabegan in April last year after complaints by Microsoft and Apple.