The one-time Internet giant AOL has signed a deal to sell over 800 of its patents to Microsoft for over US$1 billion. The deal will leave about 300 patents in AOL’s portfolio that the company said cover “core and strategic technologies, including advertising, search, content generation/management, social networking, mapping, multimedia/streaming, and security.”
AOL: You’ve got patents!
The two companies aren’t saying which patents are moving to the Microsoft camp, although AOL will still retain rights to use technology covered by the patents it is selling. Microsoft is also gaining non-exclusive licensing to the remaining patents in AOL’s portfolio.
AOL was once the king of online access, but has transitioned into more of an Internet media company as users changed their Web and email habits.
AOL has been working to sell off patents in an effort to raise cash. Microsoft won the portfolio through a competitive auction, and plans to complete the deal later this year after gaining standard regulatory approvals.