THE HIGH-PROFILE AUCTION for Eastman Kodak's patent portfolio has begun, with Apple and Google kicking off the bidding war.
The rival firms have laid down bids of between $150m and $250m for Kodak's digital imaging patents, the Wall Street Journal reports, way below the $2.6bn hat Kodak's 1,100 strong patent portfolio is expected to fetch.
Still, speculation suggests that the two firms are looking to ramp up the imaging technology in the Iphone and Android phones, respectively, following stiff competition from Nokia.
Kodak refused to comment on the mooted bids, telling the WSJ, "The auction process, including information about bids and the identity of bidders, is confidential pursuant to an order of the Bankruptcy Court.
"Disclosure of submitted bids or the identity of bidders would violate the court's order, and Kodak believes that speculation about the details and potential outcome of the auction is inappropriate."
Apple refused to comment on the rumours, and Google had not yet responded at the time of publication.
The auction of Kodak's patents is set to begin on Wednesday morning. µ