Apple's lawsuit over the library of patents Google acquired when it purchased Motorola Mobility was set to go to trial in Madison, Wisconsin today. That is, until District Judge Barbara Crabb threw out the lawsuit just hours before the trial was scheduled. She dismissed the case based on her concerns that she did not have the authority to hear the claims.
The suit contended that Motorola's licensing practices were unfair. Prior to today's events, Judge Crabb had indicated that she might determine what a fair licensing and royalty package should be. However, last week Apple indicated that it would be willing to pay no more than $1 per phone in royalties. A finding higher than that would just be a gateway to further litigation.
Judge Crabb would then be left to issue an advisory opinion, since Apple would not acquiesce to anything above $1. Reuters reported that she questioned whether she had that authority and chose to dismiss the suit.
Google, of course, expressed pleasure with the finding while Apple declined to comment. Apple's next move is to ask the judge to reconsider. If that fails, then they could appeal.