Sep 08 AT 1:06 PM Dustin Earley 32 Comments

Microsoft continuing to cash in on Android


Selling patent licenses and “protecting” smaller companies is nothing new for Microsoft. Earlier this summer, Microsoft made headlines several times for doing just that. Microsoft has been doing this for years now, so what’s made these latest licensing deals headline worthy? It’s because the patents haven’t gone out to cover Windows manufacturers. Instead, Android manufacturers have been signing up left and right to throw Microsoft royalties on every Google device sold. Several big name companies have already struck a deal, and it doesn’t look like that’s going to stop anytime soon.

Microsoft has announced today that the company has reached a licensing agreement with both Acer and ViewSonic. According to Horacio Gutierrez, Corporate Vice President and Deputy General Counsel of Intellectual Property and Licensing, Microsoft is “pleased that Acer is taking advantage of our industry-wide licensing program established to help companies address Android’s IP issues.” Under the agreement Acer, as well as ViewSonic, will pay royalties for any devices sold running Android or Chrome.

At the beginning of August, it was revealed that Microsoft makes more money from Android than it does its own Windows Phone OS. Thanks to a deal with HTC, Microsoft made roughly $60 million from Android in the second quarter alone–a whopping $40 million more than from their own devices. Deals with HTC, Acer, ViewSonic, VelocityMicro, General Dynamics, Wistron and Onkyo (just to name a few) are going to help Microsoft close the second half of this year with a bang. Who do you think will be next to ink it out with M$?

Source: CNET

Dustin Earley: Tech enthusiast; avid gamer; all around jolly guy.

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  • SliestDragon

    Gah, this just annoys me. All these royalties that companies have to pay to use android goes against what android is about. It’s suppose to be free to use. Hopefully someone is able to put Microsoft into it’s place soon…

    • Derek

      Unfortunately it doesnt work that way. Google stole large portions of code from Sun. Pretty soon Google’s going to have to pay royalties to Oracle for using Java. They’re going to lose that lawsuit for sure. Matter of fact the judge has already told Google to settle out of court that with the evidence there’s no way they could win. Also, Microsoft owned several other patents related to portable computer and PDA OS’s. You have to pay to play.

      • themanwithsauce

        @Derek – False. Google used that code with the blessing of its creators and the code was written before the Oracle aquisition. That code was written to be free to use but there are sections of java that need to be licensed. However, google avoided those bits and wrote their own code off of the skeleton provided to them by Sun. They don’t owe Oracle a dime.

        However, these royalties to microsoft might be harder to fight off because of a) precedent and b) microsoft has been in the game for a LONG time. Thanks to a legal and tax code that is about as easy to read as hieroglyphics, their patent and product portfolio is absolutely massive and it is enough to at least give them a case in the courts.


    Every time my lil boy see that pic he puts on an angry face, and says….

    “that guy looks mean..!”

    Enough said

    • SliestDragon

      Lol! That is my favorite picture of Ballmer ever. Funny how evil he looks. :p

      • hldc1

        Instant laughs every time I see that pic. Genius!

    • BiGMERF

      He also says “Dad give him a dead leg”.. If I was ever in a room with him I would.. LMAO

  • Jak Crow

    I’m so fucking sick of this. Some company needs to finally stand up and challenge microsoft once and for all and get these supposed patents invalidated.

  • Xerxes

    Wouldn’t this be cause these device have ActiveSync on them?

  • Interpol91

    This seems like it’s never going to go away.

  • Jorge

    Love the picture.

  • Black Kristos

    I’ve been hearing these stories for a while (the HTC one especially), but have been unable to find which IP and/or patents that HTC actually licenses from M$. Anyone know or have a source with more detail?

  • dokholiday44

    why come up with new and innovative ideas when you can just leech of off others?

    • Derek

      Yea, that’s exactly what Google did when it flat out stole source code from Sun’s Java runtime environment and put it in Android. It works both ways. Google’s far from innocent and they’re going to have to pay heavily to Oracle. Google should have just bought Sun when it had the chance, but they think they’re above the law. They need to be taken down a notch or two as well.

      • Duncan Mackenzie

        Jesus Christ! Do you have money invested in Oracle or something? The way you’re going on It sounds like Google raped your parents while forcing you to watch.

        Technically Java Is open source and the only thing Google had done wrong was to not take a line or two out of the code. Time to calm down dude and get some counselling for what Google did to your folks.

  • Nathan

    I don’t really understand why companies would sign up for this stupid deal in the first place it just doesn’t make sense to me.

  • kazahani

    Doesn’t Google own the patent for mobile phones now? Why are they allowing this to happen??

    • keridel

      google own the patent for mobile phone? no sir they dont.

      • kazahani

        They bought Motorola, and one of Moto’s patents covers making a call on a mobile device.

  • Mark

    As President, my first bill would be to throw the Patent system out of this country.

    • Wunako

      i really doubt Apple or mostly MSFT will allow them to change the Patent system, they are making WAAAAY to much off of its flaws. I mean just like they previously said on numerous sites, Microsoft makes more off Android then they do off of Windows Phones, theyre not just trolls theyre leeches

  • Dr.Carpy

    The emperor (Ballmer) has no clothes. What in the Ballmer era of Microsoft has been innovative and profitable, that can’t be tied back to Bill Gates? Steve Ballmer is a pustule on the ass of society.

  • Eric R.

    Microsoft is solidifying it’s partnerships, nothing more. Another way patents work for the IP holder is as bargaining chips. If you want to use my IP, then you must pay me a royalty, or I have the right to take what is owed in court. I can also loan my IP’s to my friends for them to profit from instead of me.

    There is no move to destroy android here, Microsoft can do whatever they want with their patents, even hand them out as incentives to partners to also profit from. Look at it this way, the same royalty money is going to be paid to one hand or to many hands. It doesn’t change the amount owed, therefore no further profit will actually be gained off Android than already is agreed to, only the distribution of the money has changed.

    I love how we want to demonize Microsoft for profiting from Android, when it is really just HTC paying it’s due royalties on EVERY HTC smartphone sold irregardless of what OS goes on the smartphone. HTC just happens to moving a great number of Android powered smartphones at the moment. Microsoft is profiting from HTC, HTC is profiting from Android. Plain and simple.

    Now can we get back to the war with Apple.

    Me personally:
    I love Android, Ubuntu, Windows (7,vista,WP7). <– in that order :)
    I like OSX, but really cannot be convinced to pay more for the same functionality I can get elsewhere with less restrictions.

    Me to everyone:
    Nothing is free….and Android is paid for by the targeted advertizements piped to you in most of your apps.

  • Marcus

    This needs to stop.

  • Dr.Carpy

    @ Eric. R

    Not to be a know it all, the word regardless will suffice. Irregardless is an annoying double negative people use. Regardless is already without regard, so why add irr?

    • Eric R.

      @ Dr.Carpy
      I choose to use that word irregardless of your opinion. I do recall people have been debating the validity of the word “irregardless” for a hundred years. Point being, the word “irregardless” is part of the american vernacular and is in dictionary.

      I understand the contention for what seems to be word possessing double negatives
      ir- not
      -less without
      I reject that the suffix -less will always mean “without”, and instead choose to accept to use it to describe objective “diminished value”.

      Now go forth and correct people who use the phrase “ATM machine”, as they are saying “Automated Teller Machine machine”. :)

  • Rashad

    This just ain’t right!

  • http://None CaribGrackle

    This just screams injustice all over it.

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