The agreement also ends all litigation involving Motorola Mobility, which Google sold to Lenovo Group past year while keeping its patents. A statement released by Google(NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) says that both firms have “agreed on certain patent matters and (look forward to) working together in other areas in the future to benefit our customers”. We noticed that Microsoft has been warming up to the idea of being linked with Google especially since the Microsoft Garage project was launched. No financial terms for the settling of the disputes was disclosed.
Microsoft is said to earn around US$2 billion a year from Android royalties.
Samsung and Apple agreed to drop their patent disputes outside the USA past year. And Microsoft also succeeded in winning a United States injunction against Motorola handsets infringing on the ActiveSync patents, though this was never enforced. A few of the patents have been tagged as standard-essential patents, with companies owning such patents legally required to offer them to those that are looking to use them on a FRAND basis, which means fair, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory.
Eighteen lawsuits had been active between the companies, relating to uses of technologies in mobile phones, wifi and other areas.
Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has always accused Motorola of charging excessive royalties for its standard essential patents.
A few might take today’s announcement as a sign that Microsoft is going to ease off on its patent claims in future, which would fit with CEO Satya Nadella’s claim that he wants Microsoft to be “Silicon Valley’s best friend”. The patent deal includes cross-license covering ASUS Android-based phones and tablets and Microsoft software, devices and services. We’ve heard of companies putting down their arms in favor of more amicable resolutions, and now two of the industry’s largest names are doing likewise. A short joint statement published yesterday read: “Microsoft and Google are pleased to announce an agreement on patent issues“. “The patent stalemate between Microsoft and Google won’t entitle any of Google’s partners to a refund”.