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Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) has struck the fear of god into WiFi equipment makers with recent wins in patent court cases – and now Bluetooth wireless technology vendors are getting anxious about a looming new legal offensive.

 

Last year CSIRO won an important test case against WiFi supplier Buffalo Technology which had been using its radio patents without paying – and now looks set to reap millions in royalties from the likes of Intel, Microsoft, Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Netgear.

Industry newsletter Fierce WiFi says WiFi vendors “are looking forward with anxiety and more than a bit of gloom to the royalties bill they may soon receive from CSIRO.

The newsletter comments: “Now it is the turn of Bluetooth vendors to become anxious and gloomy.”

Spurred by CSIRO’s success, the University of Washington’s patent-licensing unit has sued Nokia, Samsung, Matsushita and Panasonic over their use of Bluetooth chips made by UK-based vendor CSR – which the unit claims infringe on its patents. It has asked the court to forbid the companies from importing or selling Bluetooth products in the US.

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