According to an exclusion order issued by the ITC, some of Motorola Mobility's smartphone devices are in violation of four claims in a Microsoft patent related to scheduling meetings in a calendar. The specifics really aren't important - basically, the ITC found that Motorola infringed a Microsoft patent related to mobile software for creating and sending meeting invitations.

Motorola and Google had argued that an exclusionary order banning the import of offending Motorola devices wasn't in the public interest, but the judge didn't buy it. More importantly, it's unclear exactly which Motorola devices fall under the scope of the exclusionary order, which should go into effect roughly 60 days from now. This probably isn't enough time to cause device supplies to go uninterrupted, but then again, Motorola isn't exactly selling them by the pallet-full here in the US lately - the DROID RAZR really being the company's only truly popular smartphone.

However, as HTC has learned, it may not matter whether your phones actually violate the patents cited in ITC orders, so much as whether US Customs decides they want to "investigate" them. Most likely, US Customs will give Motorola the same treatment it has given HTC once the order goes into effect and err on the side of "caution" - if we get that far, that is.

Motorola does have one option here: settle. While the Google-Motorola deal isn't officially closed yet (China is lagging on approval), I'm sure there's plenty of closed-door discussion going on about what conceding to Microsoft's patent claims would mean for Google's image. If Motorola settles, other would-be patent trolls may start coming out of the woodwork looking for a piece of the action, and Google's other hardware partners probably wouldn't be thrilled, either. Of course, Samsung, LG, and HTC already have licensing deals with Microsoft - Motorola is the last major holdout.

Personally, I see this ending in settlement, Motorola is already lagging behind the smartphone curve, and with the Google merger still up in the air, the company doesn't want any more financial uncertainty than it already has. Check out the source link for more.

FOSSPatents, ITC Order