BT is suing Google. In a clash of the telephonic titans, BT has filed a lawsuit to shut down assorted Google services and claim a monster payout over alleged patent infringements in Android, Google Maps and Google Music.
It's a first shot across the bow from BT against Google, filed in a US court in Delaware. BT has called not only for the offending services to be shut down, but for damages to be tripled.
Foss Patents reports BT's claims that Google is infringing six of its patents. The first is a patent that allows services to work even if you have a different type of Internet connection, such as Google Music or Android behaving differently whether you have a Wi-Fi or 3G connection. Another patent involves user accounts within services such as the Android Market or Google Music.
Then there's a patent that relates to navigation information, allegedly infringed by Google Maps as it adds extra stuff like traffic information. A similar patent relates to the provision of different location information based on what kind of vehicle you're in, giving you different routes if you're in a car or on a bike or on foot. And a third location-related patent relates to Google Maps offering different information depending how far you zoom in.
One extremely wide-ranging claim involves a patent that covers the sending of a list of services, people or transport near you depending on where you are.
Ten different Google products and services are explicitly named as examples of the alleged infringements, including the new Google Music, Google Search, AdSense, Google Plus, Google Docs, Gmail, the Android Market and Android.
As ZDNet UK editor Rupert Goodwins points out on Twitter, this isn't the first time BT has sued a large US Internet company over broad patent claims. Back in 2002 it claimed to hold the patent for hyperlinking, and planned to sue every ISP in the world for royalties. The case was summarily dismissed.
BT may now decide to bring a similar suit here in Europe. But this isn't the only legal headache for Google, which is currently embattled by several other major lawsuits. Apple and Microsoft are also suing over Android, after Steve Jobs declared "thermonuclear war" on Android.
Is BT right to go after Google, or is this just sabre-rattling? Tell us your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.