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Microsoft Wins US Import Ban On Motorola's Android Devices 200

Posted by Soulskill
from the sorry-about-your-luck dept.
jbrodkin writes "The U.S. International Trade Commission today ordered an import ban on Motorola Mobility Android products, agreeing with Microsoft that the devices infringe a Microsoft patent on 'generating meeting requests' from a mobile device. The import ban stems from a December ruling that the Motorola Atrix, Droid, and Xoom (among 18 total devices) infringed the patent, which Microsoft says is related to Exchange ActiveSync technology. Today, the ITC said in a 'final determination of violation' (PDF) that 'the appropriate form of relief in this investigation is a limited exclusion order prohibiting the unlicensed entry for consumption of mobile devices, associated software and components thereof covered by ... United States Patent No. 6,370,566 and that are manufactured abroad by or on behalf of, or imported by or on behalf of, Motorola.' Motorola (which is being acquired by Google) was the last major Android device maker not to pay off Microsoft in a patent licensing deal. Microsoft has already responded to the decision, saying it hopes Motorola will now reconsider."
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Microsoft Wins US Import Ban On Motorola's Android Devices

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 18, 2012 @06:42PM (#40047019)

    Are you f'ing kidding me? The inmates really are running the asylum.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 18, 2012 @06:49PM (#40047063)

      Please read the whole summary carefully:
      from a mobile device

      These 4 words let you rehash any old shit into a patent no matter how obvious.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Sfing_ter (99478)

        What if the androids can Generate Meeting Request From Their ASSES! The same place Microsoft is pulling these patent ideas from not to mention the idiots that make these feeble rulings.

      • by Indigo (2453)

        This is brilliant, really. The old "(whatever)... on a computer!" junk patent space was getting a little played out, but now we can patent "(whatever)... on a mobile phone!" so life is good again! At least for patent trolls.

        • by Fjandr (66656)

          Just like Apple and "using a touchscreen." Microsoft's next course will be "using a gesture-tracking interface." As a bonus though, once Microsoft plays that one out it'll be hard for a future company to use the "using a holographic interface" line.

      • by bky1701 (979071)
        I have patented patenting things that are already patented (invalidly), on a smart phone. My lawyer will be calling Microsoft on Monday.
    • by santax (1541065) on Saturday May 19, 2012 @01:03AM (#40049297)
      Come on, if you can't patent sending a message asking someone to meet up with you, than what is the point to further try to innovate? It probably took millions spend in think-tanks just for the idea! Let alone the implementation!
    • Posting a bond for a royalty rate of 33 cents per device in the US for the next 60 days is a far cry from the original ~$8 per device Microsoft originally wanted. Me thinks Motorola won't have any problem paying that amount to get around the ban (even if, worst case scenario, the pending ban in Germany for Windows 7 and Xbox itself never goes into effect).

      If any inmates are running the asylum, it's the Slashdot editors and the ArsTechnica editors that are using their headlines as cheap click-bait. It's like

  • by cvtan (752695) on Friday May 18, 2012 @06:47PM (#40047051)
    Once again - Generating Meeting Requests? That's certainly a good reason to ban a product. That's all I use my phone for!
    • by c0lo (1497653) on Friday May 18, 2012 @09:23PM (#40048149)

      That's certainly a good reason to ban a product. That's all I use my phone for!

      Use it while you still can. Next in line, Google and Apple dusting off some of their patents and banning each others phones, including the MS one.

      Getting around the bans will be possible: except the smart phones won't be that smart anymore, each one will need to eliminate the "smartness" covered by the patents of the others.

      • by Splab (574204) on Saturday May 19, 2012 @01:57AM (#40049463)

        Or you know, just stop selling smart phones in the US and concentrate on the rest of the world instead, where software patents aren't an issue...

      • by symbolset (646467) *
        Oh it's not going to stop at phones. Moto is getting a ban on xbox and Windows in the Eurozone.
      • by Xest (935314)

        It doesn't work like that, Google got a ban in place against Microsoft products in Germany but a US court ordered Motorola not to enforce the German ban even though frankly it had fuck all to do with the US court as it as a German issue. Here's hoping a German court orders Microsoft not to enforce the Motorola ban and see how American sfeel about German courts enforcing their power on US soil, doubt it'll happen though.

        Basically whatever Microsoft wants Microsoft gets. People think Ballmer has achieved noth

  • by firesyde424 (1127527) on Friday May 18, 2012 @06:49PM (#40047059)

    Last time I looked(a few seconds ago), Motorola was being sued, not Google. Google was not even thinking about buying Motorola when those devices were made. So how is this Google hate even relevant?

    • by tqk (413719)

      So how is this Google hate even relevant?

      I think I've gone back and re-read everything here about four times. What Google hate? Mentioning Google's trying to buy Motorola's Google hate?

  • After all, I can use my iPhone's web browser to visit Google Calendar and send meeting requests from there.

  • by roc97007 (608802) on Friday May 18, 2012 @06:52PM (#40047081) Journal

    ...don't use Exchange. Then you don't have to have a feature on your mobile device that will generate appointments for it. Problem solved.

    If you're currently using Exchange, perhaps now is the time to think about using a cloud service for email.

    • by aztracker1 (702135) on Friday May 18, 2012 @07:51PM (#40047547) Homepage
      Or... put the exchange client on the Play Store, and make it like a simple install, when you try to add an exchange email account... then they aren't selling the device in a way that violates said patent. MS would then be entitled to a share of what that app generated $0 (because it was free).. or MS can come up with "Outlook for Android" which may be an idea... I'd be willing to use/buy it if it were similar to webOS' mail app, which is similar to Outlook's layout.

      As for the patent suit, it's a ridiculous patent, and f*ck them... it's obvious.
      • by symbolset (646467) *
        I would not trust any Microsoft app on my Android device ever. They play hardball. I wouldn't take Microsoft Office for Linux either for the same reason.
    • I don't know why anyone makes a fuss about this stuff. The majority of the large tech companies all feed the patent trolls, themselves, frequently enough that they get what they deserve.

      If a company stood it's ground and began an advertising campaign centered around exposing dumb patents and stopping their own dumb patent litigation, I could respect the situation then.

      Motorola should just do what has been done a dozen times now. Dig out some worthless patents of their own that they think they can stick in

    • by chrb (1083577)
      The patent is not limited to Exchange - it covers any implementation of meeting requests on a mobile device. Exchange is only given as an example of the broader class of "personal information managers (PIMs)" that the patent applies to:

      PIMs typically comprise applications which enable the user of the mobile device to better manage scheduling and communications, and other such tasks. Some commonly available PIMs include scheduling and calendar programs, task lists, address books, and electronic mail (e-mail) programs. Some commonly commercially available PIMs are sold under the brand names Microsoft Schedule+ and Microsoft Outlook and are commercially available from Microsoft Corporation of Redmond, Wash. For purposes of this discussion, PIMs shall also include separate electronic mail applications, such as that available under the brand name Microsoft Exchange.

      • by roc97007 (608802)

        The patent is not limited to Exchange - it covers any implementation of meeting requests on a mobile device. Exchange is only given as an example of the broader class of "personal information managers (PIMs)" that the patent applies to:

        PIMs typically comprise applications which enable the user of the mobile device to better manage scheduling and communications, and other such tasks. Some commonly available PIMs include scheduling and calendar programs, task lists, address books, and electronic mail (e-mail) programs. Some commonly commercially available PIMs are sold under the brand names Microsoft Schedule+ and Microsoft Outlook and are commercially available from Microsoft Corporation of Redmond, Wash. For purposes of this discussion, PIMs shall also include separate electronic mail applications, such as that available under the brand name Microsoft Exchange.

        Given that, wouldn't Blackberry (1999) or the Palm Pilot (1996) be prior art?

        • by Denogh (2024280)

          The patent is not limited to Exchange - it covers any implementation of meeting requests on a mobile device. Exchange is only given as an example of the broader class of "personal information managers (PIMs)" that the patent applies to:

          PIMs typically comprise applications which enable the user of the mobile device to better manage scheduling and communications, and other such tasks. Some commonly available PIMs include scheduling and calendar programs, task lists, address books, and electronic mail (e-mail) programs. Some commonly commercially available PIMs are sold under the brand names Microsoft Schedule+ and Microsoft Outlook and are commercially available from Microsoft Corporation of Redmond, Wash. For purposes of this discussion, PIMs shall also include separate electronic mail applications, such as that available under the brand name Microsoft Exchange.

          Given that, wouldn't Blackberry (1999) or the Palm Pilot (1996) be prior art?

          Filed: April 10, 1998

          Blackberry, no.

          I'm not familiar enough with the early generations of Palm's devices to say whether they had a network calendaring app pre-'98.

          • by jrumney (197329)

            I'm not familiar enough with the early generations of Palm's devices to say whether they had a network calendaring app pre-'98.

            The patent is not limited to networked calendaring. The state of the art in 1998 when the patent application was submitted was a non-networked mobile device that synced via a USB or serial cable to a PC. The independent claims in this patent are claims 1, 9 and 17. Other claims are just a refinement of those claims. All three of these claims mention a synchronizing component and

      • Can you or anyone explain to me how it happened that, with patents on machines, it is the method and process that is claimed, but with software it is the functionality itself?

        My understanding is that two people can both build, say, a flashlight if the operating principle is different (e.g. shaken capacitor drives a LED vs. solar-charged battery powers an incandescent). But software patents seem to cover the very concept of meeting requests or search suggestions, etc.

        Am I missing something?

  • The patent (Score:5, Informative)

    by hawguy (1600213) on Friday May 18, 2012 @06:52PM (#40047093)

    Here's the patent in question:

    http://www.google.com/patents/about?id=L-ELAAAAEBAJ&dq=6,370,566 [google.com]

    The present invention includes a mobile device which provides the user with the ability to schedule a meeting request from the mobile device itself. The mobile device creates an object representative of the meeting request and assigns the object a global identification number which uniquely identifies the object to other devices which encounter the object. In addition, the mobile device in accordance with one aspect of the present invention provides a property in the object which is indicative of whether the meeting request has already been transmitted. In this way, other devices which encounter the meeting request are capable of identifying it as a unique meeting request, and of determining whether the meeting request has already been transmitted, in order to alleviate the problem of duplicate meeting request transmissions.

    Is that really patentable? Assigning a unique ID to a meeting request to alleviate duplicate requests? How can that not be obvious to someone "skilled in the art"?

    Is there any other solution that's more obvious? "Hey Joe, I keep getting duplicate meeting requests from your Palm Pilot. Oh noooooos! Hey, I know, I'll send each meeting request in a different color, then if you get two purple ones you'll know it's a dupe".

    • Re:The patent (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Dcnjoe60 (682885) on Friday May 18, 2012 @06:57PM (#40047117)

      Here's the patent in question:

      http://www.google.com/patents/about?id=L-ELAAAAEBAJ&dq=6,370,566 [google.com]

      The present invention includes a mobile device which provides the user with the ability to schedule a meeting request from the mobile device itself. The mobile device creates an object representative of the meeting request and assigns the object a global identification number which uniquely identifies the object to other devices which encounter the object. In addition, the mobile device in accordance with one aspect of the present invention provides a property in the object which is indicative of whether the meeting request has already been transmitted. In this way, other devices which encounter the meeting request are capable of identifying it as a unique meeting request, and of determining whether the meeting request has already been transmitted, in order to alleviate the problem of duplicate meeting request transmissions.

      Is that really patentable? Assigning a unique ID to a meeting request to alleviate duplicate requests? How can that not be obvious to someone "skilled in the art"?

      Is there any other solution that's more obvious? "Hey Joe, I keep getting duplicate meeting requests from your Palm Pilot. Oh noooooos! Hey, I know, I'll send each meeting request in a different color, then if you get two purple ones you'll know it's a dupe".

      Better yet, it is so vague that probably every laptop and table is also in violation of it, well every laptop and tablet not running Windows (ie Apple). My old palm pilot is also probably in violation, too.

      • Sounds like ethernet or any previous network device, just addressing people instead of devices.
    • by arose (644256)
      And just how would the implementation differ if it was not done from a mobile device but say from a desktop computer?
    • The claims (Score:5, Insightful)

      by DeadCatX2 (950953) on Friday May 18, 2012 @07:09PM (#40047227) Journal

      FTFA: claims 1, 2, 5, or 6 of the United States Patent No. 6,370,566

      FTFP:

      1. A mobile device, comprising:

              an object store;
              an application program configured to maintain objects on the object store;
              a user input mechanism configured to receive user input information;
              a synchronization component configured to synchronize individual objects stored on the object store with remote objects stored on a remote object store;
              a communications component configured to communicate with a remote device containing the remote object store; and
              wherein the application program is further configured to generate a meeting object and an electronic mail scheduling request object based on the user input information.

      2. The mobile device of claim 1 wherein the application program is configured to generate the meeting object with a global identifier property uniquely identifying the meeting object among a plurality of other objects.

      5. The mobile device of claim 1 wherein the application program further comprises:

              a contacts application program configured to maintain objects on the object store indicative of contact information wherein the contact information includes address information indicative of a fully qualified electronic mail addresses for individuals identified by the contact information; and
              wherein the application program is configured to obtain the fully qualified electronic mail address of potential attendees identified by the contact information by interaction with the contacts application program.

      6. The mobile device of claim 1 wherein the application program is configured to generate the meeting object and the electronic mail scheduling request object such that properties of the objects are compatible with at least a second application program associated with the remote object store and different from the application program.

      Claim 1: A mobile device.

      Claim 2: Using a GUID.

      Claim 5: And an address book.

      Claim 6: Which talks to a remote server.

      ...

      We're fucking doomed.

      • We're fucking doomed.

        Oh, but, no the system can't be irreparibly broken. That would be uncomfortable and put a damper on my chronological ethnocentrism.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Didn't PalmOS do this in the PalmPilot and Treo long before Microsoft thought mobile devices were interesting?

      • Actually, no. Microsoft has been tinkering with mobile devices for a long time. As funny as it seems, they were actually one of the pioneers in this field, together with Psion and Apple. Windows CE predates even the first Palm Pilot.

    • I don't quite understand any of it. Doesn't ActiveSync create a layer by which any software (regardless of the kind of device it may be running on) can insert objects into Exchange? Wouldn't it be Exchange itself which would be taking care of any duplication issues?

      Or to put this in really simple terms, is ActiveSync not just an API that allows http(s) access to Exchange functionality? If that's the case, then the patent itself doesn't even actually describe what Motorola (and every other Android phone and

      • by rtb61 (674572)

        The reality here is nothing to do with meetings or calenders. It is all about being able to remotely update a database. No matter what you name those columns and rows, it is all about updating a remote database. The US Patents office is claiming that every database type can be patented not once but twice, once for fixed location updating and once for remote location updating. Even when everything in between has already been patented, the phones, the computers, the network, the relational database software.

    • This sounds like a telex machine, they were used by ships to schedule shipping (meetings of ship and cargo). Every message would have a unique id, mobile (by ship), used to schedule meetings, meeting requests created as objects (paper), determine if sent (you get a response when sent), used an address book (a routing indicator book).
      • by ihavnoid (749312)

        If you compare the telex with claim 1, the telex machine doesn't have an application, not used for storing data on a remote storage, and certainly doesn't have a synchronization mechanism. Finally, telex machines doesn't seem to qualify as a mobile device.

        If something doesn't EXACTLY match the description of AT LEAST one claim, it isn't an infringement. Actually, that's why many patents are quite easy to bypass.

    • by ihavnoid (749312)

      You are missing the point. It seems that many people on slashdot simply don't understand how patents work.

      The abstract and the description of the patent doesn't mean that the patent owner "owns" whatever described on it. The description is there for the readers so that they can understand how the whole stuff works. It can contain whatever description you want.

      The idea Microsoft "owns" is described as "claims", which essentially describes a mobile device which has a UI, can synchronize to a remote system,

  • That seems corrupt (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Mirkman (1720140) on Friday May 18, 2012 @06:57PM (#40047115)
    I would have thought a ruling by a judge would be needed to render something banned from import. So the power to regulate allows government agencies the ability to make profound and legally binding decisions without need for court systems or due process? I was not aware the ITC were experts on IP.
    • by ScrewMaster (602015) on Friday May 18, 2012 @07:12PM (#40047249)

      I would have thought a ruling by a judge would be needed to render something banned from import. So the power to regulate allows government agencies the ability to make profound and legally binding decisions without need for court systems or due process? I was not aware the ITC were experts on IP.

      They're not, and you're right ... they just ban stuff because a lawyer makes a convincing argument to a bureaucrat who hasn't the slightest idea of what the subject matter is, or how it relates to the product class in question. This will still go to court, and ultimately I suspect the ban will be lifted. The ITC is where everyone goes to get fast action without any court time.

      • In this case, it's physical goods that appear to be in violation of a patent, and their import into the country. Legally, it's sound.. even if the suit is pending, and the patent is ridiculous, until the suit is done, you shouldn't be able to sell said items (which are likely in conflict).

        I don't agree with this instance of a patent, but someone who is violating a worthy patent shouldn't be allowed to keep violating it while the suit takes place.
        • by tqk (413719)

          ... but someone who is violating a worthy patent shouldn't be allowed to keep violating it while the suit takes place.

          Why? What happened to the presumption of innocence? If it's determined that it infringes, assign damages.

        • by Bert64 (520050)

          And if the patent is ultimately ruled invalid, who compensates the business that lost sales and marketshare due to their product not being on sale?
          Such a system is far too ripe for abuse, you will get a bunch of tiny shill companies setting up to file entirely frivolous suits and then tie them up for as long as possible for the sole purpose of harming a competitor... When the suit finally gets thrown out, the shill company has no money left and so cannot compensate their victim.

          • by daath93 (1356187)
            LoL, Motorola will lose a negligible sum of money in the 5 seconds it takes them to remove the software. They settle these things for breakfast. By noon their CEO will be having a drink with Steve Balmer chuckling over their "loss", "Good one Steve, I'll get you next time." While colluding with each other on how to screw you out of more money.
    • by DragonWriter (970822) on Friday May 18, 2012 @07:21PM (#40047315)

      I would have thought a ruling by a judge would be needed to render something banned from import.

      Its not.

      So the power to regulate allows government agencies the ability to make profound and legally binding decisions without need for court systems or due process?

      "Government agencies" have very little in terms of inherent power. What they do have is the power conferred on them by Congress acting under its Article I powers, which often include the ability to make decisions of first instance in certain controversies. Due process is required in such proceedings by the 5th Amendment.

      These decisions are, generally, subject to review, sometimes by special courts set up for review of agency decisions (Article I courts), and -- either initially or subsequently -- by the regular (Article III) courts.

      I was not aware the ITC were experts on IP.

      Since their role is narrower than that of, say, the regular federal trial courts, and IP is specifically central to it, there's far more reason to expect that the ITC members are IP experts than that the federal judges and juries that would hear cases in Article III courts would be.

    • by chrb (1083577)

      A government that has the power to ban your competitor's products also has the power to ban your products. Perhaps, at some point, someone will get a patent injunction against some essential features of Windows or Office and then refuse to license the patent...

      "If people had understood how patents would be granted when most of today's ideas were invented, and had taken out patents, the industry would be at a complete standstill today. The solution to this is patent exchanges with large companies and paten

    • by symbolset (646467) *
      ALJ in the pdf refers to "Administrative Law Judge".
  • by AlienIntelligence (1184493) on Friday May 18, 2012 @07:02PM (#40047159)

    Wow, remove it and continue to ship.

    -AI

  • disgusting (Score:5, Interesting)

    by PopeRatzo (965947) on Friday May 18, 2012 @07:13PM (#40047255) Homepage Journal

    a Microsoft patent on 'generating meeting requests' from a mobile device

    Roll that around in your brain for a second.

    I really wonder why anyone would have one bit of respect for any intellectual property laws when they are being perverted in this way.

    And they wonder why there is hostility toward our current economic system. Maybe it's because the people at the top of that system have completely broken the social contract.

    Between this story and the notion that Facebook, a corporation that produces nothing, employs almost nobody, and whose users are not their customers is now worth >$100billion, and the fact that the young founder of Facebook is has greater net worth than the bottom 1/5th (!) of the entire US population, I think a picture of an economic system in its death throes starts to take shape. I can't see how it can last much longer, nor can I think of a reason why it should.

    • Maybe it's because the people at the top of that system have completely broken the social contract.

      Sorry, but 'social contract' is a fairy tale that's told so you can pretend like you're not supposed to be getting screwed, but instead they're they're just breaking the rules. Bad boys, they need to be brought back in line.

      The reality is that you getting screwed is the rule of this socio-economic system. Big governments and their corporate creations locked into a tight positive feedback loop. Hold on tight

      • by bky1701 (979071)
        "Big governments and their corporate creations locked into a tight positive feedback loop."

        Are you implying, as has been falsely implied many times before, that a small government results in a lower probability of a corrupt, monopolistic economy arising? I would have thought seemingly intelligent people would have moved past that. Governments might aid corporations due to corruption, but when you give it all over to an unregulated "free" market, nobody needs corruption to screw over the people; they just
    • a Microsoft patent on 'generating meeting requests' from a mobile device

      Roll that around in your brain for a second.

      I really wonder why anyone would have one bit of respect for any intellectual property laws when they are being perverted in this way.

      Because people who have respect for IP laws realize that someone's description of the patent may not actually be what the patent claims? Consider, Toyota has a patent (several, actually) on the Prius hybrid engine. But if I just said "a Toyota patent on 'a vehicle engine'," people who didn't realize that there's more to it would think it was insane. Why, there's more than a century of prior art! Disgusting, huh?

      There are issues with the patent system, but basing your evidence for those issues on someone's

  • not think that patents are utterly useless and absurd?

    The "invention" in question is laughable beyond belief.

    The defendent and plaintiff are mutlinational corporations. Not a little guy that needs protecting.

    How do the lawyers whose lifework is this nonsense make sense of their lives? At the end of the day, in your old age, what is the value of your life's work? Did you make anything? Did you help anyone? Or did you shuffle words around a disgusting nonsensical argument foisted on some other lawyers for the sake of absurd privations? What a completely and utterly useless and despicable existence.

    Why do we as a society tolerate this useless sideshow? Oh, because of all the money involved, right.

    • I believe you. However, here you are preaching to the choir. You may want to champion your beliefs at, say, IP Watchdog [ipwatchdog.com].

      I learned there that you should apply for software patents before any code has been written, and that thinking of the idea is the hard part. Coders just do what they're told -- that stuff is simple. It takes a really smart ass^H^H^H guy to come up with ideas like this patent.

    • by bky1701 (979071)
      I think the real problem is that no one outside of slashdot and business people follow this kind of news. It truly illustrates why ideas are not property, and why when you try to make them such, everyone loses; but to most people, this is not on the radar. When they think of patents, they think of keeping some Chinese company from 'stealing' some American's genius invention, not the billions of dollars wasted on pointless inter-corporate patent wars and the damage done to the companies and citizens who get
    • by deblau (68023)

      We patent lawyers write, attack, and defend patents for the same reason that any other schmo gets up in the morning and goes into work: someone pays us to. Maybe that type of existence doesn't align with your worldview, but it's nevertheless a perfectly logical explanation.

    • by Lisias (447563)

      Why do we as a society tolerate this useless sideshow? Oh, because of all the money involved, right.

      What's money, anyway?

      Can you eat it? It will nurse you when sick? Protect you from a bullet?

      What will happens to these guys when the money they think they have became worhless, as no one will have more to trade?

      Money it's worthless. It must exchange hands in order to have some value. Any kind of action that encumbers this dynamics should be dealt as a crime against the People.

  • These things should not be patentable per se (which isn't to say that particularly clever implementations couldn't be patented):

    1. Doing something on a wireless, portable, or handheld computer that is already done on a desktop (and not covered by a patent there.)

    Joins my old favorite:

    2. Anything that exists in the real world, a simulation is not per se patentable. Again, unless the real world thing is patented, and subject to the "clever implementation" issue.

  • This is a sign of weakness and corruption when they can't just compete, but cheat with crooked bureaucrats and filthy politicians. First it was Apple being whiny punks, now M$ follows suit. (pardon the pun) Personally for their pathetic actions, I am boycotting both companies the best that I can. I will go back to smoke signals and an abacus before giving these bastards one worn out penny.

  • It's crap like this, that the world is going to start rooting for the Iranians and N Koreans just to put a thumb, or stake, in the US gubermint's eye. As a kid, I was glad some of my great grandparents left Germany decades before WWI and then the Nazis. Guess it's time to pay them forward.
  • WooHoo Cheap Xooms for the 7 billion of us who live outside of the USA. A nice 32gb Xoom for about $200 - sounds good to me.
  • by Grieviant (1598761) * on Friday May 18, 2012 @09:06PM (#40048035)
    Generating meeting requests? Seriously, how the fuck is that an innovation that someone skilled in the art would not be able to come up with? It's time the patent office was held responsible for enabling patent trolling by lowering the bar to the ground. How about a system where any patent that ends up being overturned requires the patent office to pay the associated legal fees? You'd need a 3rd party to conduct the reexaminations to avoid conflict of interest, but it might do something to stem the tide of handing out junk patents like penny candy.
  • or disable the function or start paying Microsoft.

    They'll be not importing for a couple of days while they implement their workaround, which has already been worked out in anticipation of the ruling.

  • Fuck man - this is as ridiculous a patent as the round corners one from Apple.

  • I travel between China and the USA, and when I am in the USA I want 4G support, so buying a non-4G version of the Razr Maxx is out of the question (what is sold in Asia is all non-4G as far as I have found). I already know the Verizon version is supported on China Unicom's 3G network, so using it in China isn't a problem.

    I wonder what the chance is this ban, even temporary, would allow me to pick up a 4G Razr Maxx for less than the fairly crazy US$649/no contract price it goes for in the USA... Surely some

  • Microsoft should just go away and quit trying to collect money for things they had no part at all in creating. To the fools that claim that Motorola or Google deserve it, It's not punishing Motorola at all. It's picking money out of your pockets for every Moto product that you buy to enrich Bill Gates even further.

    If the feature cannot be removed or worked around (and I'm betting that it can), then ship in the phones with no operating system installed -- hence no infringement at the border where this is all

  • I would never allow any patent to go through which describes something obvious and/or being already done before just beause it involves implementatin on mobile devices. Why? Because they are just that, re-implementations on another device. It doesn't matter how much extra lines of codes it needs, it's nothing new involved besides a few technicalitiries. I know pro-software patent people will not agree, but hey, you already got your ever lasting christmas when sw patents became possible, with that you've exh

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