Google Maps could be banned in Germany
Google has to face a new battle in Germany, where the tech giant and rival Microsoft aims to ban Google Maps over patents violation.
Microsoft originally filed the lawsuit against Motorola Mobility alleging Google's subsidiary infringed a key patent for technology involving a "computer system for identifying local resources" used in the Android app of Google Maps.
However, when Motorola explained that it has no responsibilities on Google Maps' operations, Microsoft decided to add Google to the lawsuit.
“ We remain confident that the Court will find that Motorola and Google have infringed our intellectual property”, Microsoft told New Europe. “We continue to hope for a licensing agreement that will resolve all the current disputes between the companies.”
A German judge has stated that he's "inclined" to ban Google Maps in the country, but the company could always pay Microsoft a licensing fee for the technology, like LG, Samsung and HTC do. A final decision is expected to take place in the next two months
If no agreement takes place and the ban goes through, Google Maps will disappear from any computer using German IP address. In addition, Google Maps app for Android won't be longer distributed in the country and filter might be installed in order to block the service in web browsers.
This is not the first time Google Maps is in the spotlight in Germany. Back in December, the Independent Centre for Privacy Protection in Schleswig-Holstein, affirmed Street View service was violating European data protection laws.
Nevertheless, Google's problems don't stay in Europe. On 13 March, the search engine agreed to pay a $7 million fine for collecting people's personal data without authorisation through its Street View service in the US.