Kodak, Sony Settle Digital Camera Fight

Imaging titan Kodak has come to a settlement with both Sony and Sony-Ericsson over patents and digital imaging technology, bringing and end to a patent dispute dating back to early 2004. Although financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed, Kodak characterizes the license agreements as “royalty-bearing” to Kodak, although Sony characterizes the terms as having “no material impact on Sony’s consolidated earnings forecast.”

The dispute got started back in March 2004 when Kodak filed suit against Sony, alleging the electronics maker was infringing on several Kodak digital imaging patents. In April of the same year, Sony fired back with its own lawsuit, alleging Kodak was infringing on several of its imaging patents.

Neither company has commented on the patents covered in the cross-licensing agreement, although it’s pretty safe to say many of the patents involved in the initial lawsuits would be good candidates. Clearing away the patent dispute may enable Kodak to focus more clearly on its moves to transform its core businesses toward digital technology and away from its once very-lucrative traditional film-based businesses.