Microsoft licenses smartwatch technologies to Casio in patent deal

Microsoft has announced it has entered into a new patent licensing agreement with Casio. And while most patent licensing deals seem rather dull to onlookers, what makes this one interesting is that Microsoft will specifically be licensing smartwatch technologies to the Japanese watchmaker.

From Microsoft:

On Monday, Microsoft Technology Licensing LLC and Casio Computer Co. Ltd. announced a new patent licensing agreement that includes broad coverage for smartwatch technologies. Casio's smartwatches, which include Casio's WSD-F10 and WSD-F20 Smart Outdoor Watch, enable modern personal connectivity, while also coming equipped with many sensors that support a complement of outdoor features such as activity monitoring, and altimeter, barometer and compass readings.

While it's easy to run away with wild speculation on deals like this, the reality is that Casio is most likely taking advantage of Microsoft's many wearables patents to further differentiate its Android Wear lineup. While that might sting a little for anyone hoping for some sort of Microsoft Band-related news, patent licensing is a solid way for Microsoft to stay involved in wearables from a distance.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl