U.S. judge tosses Apple vs. Google lawsuit over patents
(Reuters) - An Apple lawsuit against Google's Motorola Mobility unit over alleged patent abuse was thrown out on Monday just hours before trial, a setback for the iPhone maker in its efforts to gain leverage in the smartphone patent wars.
The two rivals were set to square off in a Madison, Wisconsin federal court over the library of patents Google Inc acquired along with Motorola for $12.5 billion in May. Apple Inc claimed Motorola's licensing practices were unfair.
However, late last week District Judge Barbara Crabb questioned whether she had the legal authority to hear Apple's claims, and on Monday she dismissed the case.
A Google spokeswoman said the company was pleased with the order, while an Apple representative declined to comment. In a legal brief filed after Crabb's ruling, Apple contended that the judge does indeed have the authority to hear its claims.