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First it was Apple vs. HTC, then it was Motorola vs. us power users, and now it's Microsoft facing off against the third of those three companies.

That's right - Microsoft has just filed an ITC complaint against Motorola over infringements of nine patents allegedly violated in Motorola's Android-related devices. Although Microsoft did not specify the exact patents violated in their press release (which you can read in its entirety below), the company did say that they are related to "synchronizing email, calendars and contacts, scheduling meetings, and notifying applications of changes in signal strength and battery power." I do not see how Motorola has violated any of these; what’s more, all of the violations mentioned are most likely built into the Android OS and therefore not Motorola's responsibility, but then again, sometimes companies make as little sense as the devices they push past the FCC.

Source: Microsoft via Engadget

Microsoft Files Patent Infringement Action Against Motorola

REDMOND, Wash. – Oct. 1, 2010 – Microsoft Corp. today filed a patent infringement action against Motorola, Inc. and issued the following statement from Horacio Gutierrez, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel of Intellectual Property and Licensing:

“Microsoft filed an action today in the International Trade Commission and in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington against Motorola, Inc. for infringement of nine Microsoft patents by Motorola’s Android-based smartphones. The patents at issue relate to a range of functionality embodied in Motorola’s Android smartphone devices that are essential to the smartphone user experience, including synchronizing email, calendars and contacts, scheduling meetings, and notifying applications of changes in signal strength and battery power.

We have a responsibility to our customers, partners, and shareholders to safeguard the billions of dollars we invest each year in bringing innovative software products and services to market. Motorola needs to stop its infringement of our patented inventions in its Android smartphones.”

Jaroslav Stekl
Jaroslav Stekl is a tech enthusiast whose favorite gadgets almost always happen to be the latest Android devices. When he's not writing for Android Police, he's probably hiking, camping, or canoeing. He is also an aspiring coffee aficionado and an avid moviegoer.

  • David Ruddock

    HTC and Motorola utilize their own Outlook Exchange sync software. It's actually very possible Motorola is in violation, full Exchange connectivity (beyond what stock Android does) requires use of client-side code that is patented MS property.

    This would settle as a matter of payment of royalties, probably not amounting to a huge sum, but Microsoft would be getting a piece of Motorola's Android device profit pie.

    Notifying applications of signal strength and battery life are probably things Microsoft "incidentally" discovered during their scouring of Motorola's code, and will probably just be used as more leverage to get Motorola to settle on a royalty rate.

    There's a reason Android doesn't natively support Outlook Calendar, Tasks, Address Book, etc.

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