So what is a Patent pool?
Patent pool is a pool of all the patents related to certain technology and licensing based on an economic model, like a percentage of the selling cost of a product, etc. Patent pools have come to the forefront of LTE deployment and 4G rollouts, and have threatened to disrupt the way technology is deployed. One of the first salvos for patent infringement was fired by Adaptix, an OFDMA-vendor with a suite of WiMAX-based equipment that helps WiMAX carriers support mobile VoIP on Clearwire in 2008. Patent pools are managed by specialized companies that don’t own intellectual property themselves. They set up licensing programs, collect license fees and distribute the proceeds to member companies. In the case of LTE, three of these — Sisvel, Via Licensing and MPEG LA – have formed pools that represent a critical mass of LTE patents.
Formations of the pools are at an early stage, with none of them yet operating and no patent holders publicly announcing their affiliations. But while all three say they are months away from operation, Via claims it has the most aggressive program.