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ITC Judge: Motorola Mobility Infringed Microsoft Patent 141

Posted by samzenpus
from the let-the-suing-begin dept.
chrb writes "An International Trade Commission judge has issued a preliminary ruling that Motorola Mobility infringed one of Microsoft's patents. The disputed patent covers storing a meeting request on a mobile device, and was rejected by the European Patent Office as being 'obvious.' The judge also ruled that six other Microsoft patents were not being infringed. Experts say that this will strengthen Microsoft's hand in collecting patent fees on Android. Microsoft recently claimed that it now collects patent fees on over half of all Android devices sold."
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ITC Judge: Motorola Mobility Infringed Microsoft Patent

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  • by ozmanjusri (601766) <aussie_bob@NOspaM.hotmail.com> on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @09:57PM (#38455674) Journal

    Reread the first sentence then get back to us!

    I'm back.

    Some balance from the Wall Street Journal:
    Motorola Mobility Claims Patent Win Against Microsoft
    Judge rules in favor of Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc on six of seven Microsoft Corp patents
    http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20111220-716842.html [wsj.com]

    Microsoft has had six patents invalidated and will be forced to provide clarity on patent 566 (sharing calendar events). That means other companies will be able to work around the patent without paying Microsoft's extortion fee. It's an excellent first step in pulling the fangs of their patent trolling.

  • by ozmanjusri (601766) <aussie_bob@NOspaM.hotmail.com> on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @10:47PM (#38455894) Journal
    The point the pp was making is that " a mobile device which provides the user with the ability to schedule a meeting request from the mobile device itself." is about as ubiquitous and obvious as using touch screens on mobile devices.

    The good news is that now that particular patent bullet has been fired, it won't be reusable for their standover team. One less round of ammunition for the rest of Microsoft's protection racket.

  • No you didn't (Score:5, Informative)

    by Mathinker (909784) on Thursday December 22, 2011 @02:16AM (#38456884) Journal

    You totally miss the implications of his post (possibly because he forgot to add the phrase "all of" to "Once all of the patents are identified"). Just because Microsoft decided to use X numbers of patents against Motorola doesn't mean they don't have another Y waiting in line for the next court case. So your quoted source makes no difference.

    Since there is no legal way to require Microsoft to reveal all of the patents they think might infringe on Android, his post is, rather than FUD, merely fantasy. The fact that it is fantasy showcases a major problem with the patent system. The law should be that if someone pays licensing fees, they can require the party they are paying to reveal all of their patents which they feel are infringed (by that particular technology), and any patents which are not revealed are automatically rendered toothless (against that particular technology), even against third parties. (Now I'm fading into fantasy... <sigh/>)

    > no one has resources to track down all the reasons why they are crap, and sue Microsoft over each and every of them.

    You also missed a second major problem with his post: there is no legal penalty for filing an invalid patent. Or at least, for all practical purposes.

  • by Xest (935314) on Thursday December 22, 2011 @06:33AM (#38457744)

    "6 of the Microsoft patents were thrown out and only 1 was upheld."

    Yes, I'm not sure why some people are saying this ruling strengthens Microsoft's hand. The ruling only effects sales in America, and only applies to one patent. Companies aren't going to be willing to pay Microsoft as much for one patent only valid in the US as they would've been for 6 patents valid worldwide. If anything I think this will lessen the amount Microsoft will be able to get out of companies over Android - no one's going to pay what they were paying for just a single feature in the American market.

    Sure it strengthens Microsoft's hand in getting other companies to license that patent, if they want it, but it doesn't strengthen their hand in the amount they can extort, it weakens their bargaining chip dramatically. Companies wont even be willing to pay Microsoft full stop for their patents on handsets sold outside the US, and they'll only be licensing at most 1 patent for handsets sold inside the US.

  • by sgt scrub (869860) <saintium@yaHORSEhoo.com minus herbivore> on Thursday December 22, 2011 @07:58AM (#38458110)

    Then let's see who these patent litigants will sue.

    The developer who wrote the "extension-like add-on" for creating it, Google for allowing it to be implemented, and everyone that distributes it. These are patent lawyers we are talking about. If they can think of someone to sue, they will sue.

To thine own self be true. (If not that, at least make some money.)

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