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license

Instagram is a popular photo sharing application/service found on other smartphone platforms. For the most part, Windows Phone users have been eager to see Instagram app made available in the Windows Phone Store. But a change in Instagram's Terms of Service may change the level of excitement an Instagram Windows Phone app may have.

Effective January 16, 2013 Instagram will claim worldwide license to any content posted to the service. That means Instagram could use your photos for advertisement or sell them to third parties without any compensation headed your way.

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Google is getting bold, telling OEMs 'no' on other OSs

Update: Google's Andy Rubin finally responds. See after the break...

A bit of a controversy is slowly erupting over Acer’s widely publicized plan to use the Aliyun OS in a new line of low-cost smartphones, mostly destined for the Chinese market. Aliyun OS is a Linux-based system developed by the Chinese company Alibaba Group and offered a way for OEMs like Acer to diversify.

Acer has now abruptly canceled plans after Google “expressed concerns” over the announcement.  Though Acer still wants to use the Aliyun OS, the move by Google is being interpreted as a hostile action to block competition. Reportedly Google threatened to cancel Acer’s license to make Android devices, which many consider playing hardball.

The question is, how far is Google willing to go to maintain dominance?

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Portfolio Manager for ZTE UK, Santiago Sierra has revealed to TrustedReviews that the reason Windows Phones manufactured by the Chinese company will be more expensive is due to the licensing fees set by Microsoft, which he placed between £20-25 ($30-40) per license. This amount is more than what was believed, without any official fee being revealed. 

We would like to believe the higher cost of the license is justified by certain features of the operating system - including Xbox LIVE, Office, and more. However, it has always been thought that licensing costs for HTC and Samsung to be between £5-10 ($10-15), but this could be due to production volume number discounts, much like what businesses may receive when purchasing multiple copies of Microsoft Office.

This cost may prevent manufacturers (like ZTE) to pump out low cost smartphones, which can be seen with the Tania pricing (almost on par with generation 1 handsets). Let's not forget that Microsoft collects royalties from manufacturers who build Android handsets, which come to around $15 per device.

Source: TrustedReviews, via: The Verge

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Microsoft has just signed a massive patent deal with Samsung on every Android tablet and smartphone the manufacturer sells, which will earn the software giant royalty revenue per device in addition to being a cross-licensing deal. Microsoft had previously signed a similar deal with HTC and Acer and Viewsonic, but this is said to be the largest Android patent deal to-date.

Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith and top IP lawyer Horacio Gutierrez said in a blog post:

"Together with the license agreement signed last year with HTC, today’s agreement with Samsung means that the top two Android handset manufacturers in the United States have now acquired licenses to Microsoft’s patent portfolio. These two companies together accounted for more than half of all Android phones sold in the U.S. over the past year."

While the deal focuses mainly on patents and Android, it also calls for Samsung to continue to work with Microsoft on Windows Phone, which is a massive bonus for Microsoft (and customers). Something that will hopefully combat what the manufacturer was rumoured to be doing in 2013 - leaving Windows Phone. Unfortunately the exact amount that Microsoft will earn per-device sold wasn't disclosed, could be $15?.

This just goes to show how companies can work together to overcome lawsuits galore.

Source: Microsoft, via: Android Central

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Yet more royalty charges from Microsoft (remember the report of HTC paying Microsoft $5 per device?), this time it's for Samsung, the largest Android OEM. The software behemoth is requesting a royalty fee of $15 per Android device sold by the handset manufacturer. This would prove to be a monster of a revenue stream with analysts forecasting Samsung selling around 19 million units between April and June alone this year.

The Maeil Business Newspaper quoted unnamed industry officials saying that Samsung would likely attempt to negotiate the fee and lower it to $10 in exchange for presumably more Windows Phone 7 devices and a 'deeper alliance' with Microsoft.

Via: AndroidCentral, Reuters

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