Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Motorola guilty of infringing Microsoft's patent, rules ITC

Months ago, we had reported about bitterness brewing between software giant, Microsoft and popular smartphone manufacturer, Motorola Mobility over the latter's Android smartphones infringing on Microsoft's patents. Back then, however, Microsoft had claimed that Motorola Mobility infringed on as many as nine of its patents, pertaining to syncing e-mail, calendar, and contacts, and notifying applications about changes in signal strength and battery power. Now, an official statement by Motorola, and a report by Reuters confirms that though Motorola Mobility has been found guilty of infringing on a patent owned by Microsoft, the number of these patents itself has been reduced to one. 

Legal affairs
Amidst patent woes..

According to an official statement by Motorola, "Motorola Mobility Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: MMI) ("Motorola Mobility") today announced that it has received notice that the Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) in the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) action brought by Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) against Motorola Mobility has issued an initial determination. The ALJ determined that Motorola Mobility does not violate six of the seven Microsoft patents listed in Microsoft’s suit. The Company noted that Microsoft had previously dropped two patents from its original case which included nine patents." The infringed patent in question, pertains to the feature using which users can schedule their meetings via their mobile phones.

Back in the day, when Microsoft had filed its complaint with the U.S International Trade Commission, it had stated that Motorola's Android-based devices infringed on Microsoft's Windows Mobile and Windows Phone; Microsoft services, which manage activities like monitoring remaining memory, updating contact lists and synchronizing online and offline use. The report further reveals that Motorola smartphones that have allegedly infringed on Microsoft's patent, include - Motorola Droid 2, the Droid X, Cliq XT, Devour, Backflip, among others.

This decision, and the final one, which is scheduled to happen soon could have far reaching implications on the future prospects of Motorola Mobility in the United States. Now the case rests with the U.S ITC - trade panel that investigates patent infringement involving imported goods. It is a popular venue for patent lawsuits because it can bar the importation of infringing products.

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