It's just driver code and interface specs. If that is all that sepperates a company from it's competition then there is nothing sepperating them. The only thing useful to do with such IP is to interface to the device. What are they worried about? That BrandX will make a device that does the same thing and shares the same interface? They'd still have to do all their own R&D on building the device. They'd just save a little effort by not having to write drivers. What companies fail to realize is that opensource developers will write everybody's drivers for them, for free, if they only open their specs. Unless you're #1 in your market there is no reason not to standardize on opensource drivers. Even if you are #1 there is good reason to standardize - to keep everyone else from ganging up against you and turning the users (your customers) against you.