Enters into agreement with Taiwanese ODM Compal, a producer of smartphones and tablets
Microsoft has revealed that it has entered into patent license agreements with companies accounting for more than half of all Android devices.
The company announced its tenth license agreement on its blog. The agreemnet is with Compal, an Original Design Manufacturer, or ODM. Compal is based in Taiwan, where it produces smartphones and tablet computers for third parties, and has revenue of roughly $28bn per year. The agreement marks Microsoft’s ninth Android agreement in the last four months.
Earlier, Google had accused Microsoft of organising a hostile campaign against its software, "waged through bogus patents."
The company said on the bog that while lawsuits may dominate many of the headlines, these are being overtaken by the number of license agreements being signed.
Microsoft executive vice-president Brad Smith and Deputy General Counsel Horacio Gutierrez said, "Amidst continuing clamor about uncertainty and litigation relating to smartphone patents, we’re putting in place a series of agreements that are reasonable and fair to both sides."
"Our agreements ensure respect and reasonable compensation for Microsoft’s inventions and patent portfolio. Equally important, they enable licensees to make use of our patented innovations on a long-term and stable basis."
Microsoft said that the fast pace of licensing is reshaping the legal landscape for smartphone patents.
Smith and Gutierrez said, "At Microsoft, we’re building on our extensive experience with patent licensing. Over the past decade we’ve spent roughly $4.5 billion to license in patents from other companies. These have given us the opportunity to build on the innovations of others in a responsible manner that respects their IP rights.
"Equally important, we’ve stood by our customers and partners with countless agreements that contain the strongest patent indemnification provisions in our industry. These ensure that if our software infringes someone else’s patents, we’ll address the problem rather than leave it to others. And as reported in this morning’s Seattle Times, we’ve now entered into 1,133 agreements over the last decade to license our patents to other companies that share our desire to respect IP rights."