Microsoft wins patent court battle against Google to lower licensing fees

Microsoft has beaten Google in a court battle, walking away with a ruling that could potentially lower rates that electronics makers pay to license technology for smartphones and personal computers.

Microsoft granted patent on 'inconspicuous mode' to make your device less disruptive

Microsoft has been granted a patent for a new "inconspicuous mode", which would automatically adjust settings on your phone in certain situations to make your phone less distracting. The company first filed for the patent about a year ago.

Do not look for Nokia to return to the smartphone business in 2016, says current CEO

As Microsoft solidifies its rebranding of the Nokia mobile division heading into 2015, there is one rumor that just won't die: Nokia wants to make smartphones again.

Certainly there is nostalgia behind the iconic brand, something that current Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri clearly understands. However, there is just too much navel-gazing these days for 'clues' in Nokia's Facebook and Twitter posts that Nokia wants to make phones again. Luckily, Suri today made it clear that Nokia has no plans to return to smartphones.

Microsoft announces patent licensing deal with Canon

Microsoft has signed an agreement with camera-maker Canon to cross-license several patents. Microsoft says that this agreement will allow for increased innovation, while at the same time preventing patent lawsuits. Microsoft has a fairly long history of IP licensing agreements with other companies, having made 1,100 such deals since 2003.

Apple and Microsoft team up to slow patent reform

Tech giants like Apple and Microsoft have pushed for reform of the US patent system after being involved in a multitude of legal actions over patents, but now they're pushing to slow reform. Apple and Microsoft are teaming up with Ford Motor Company, DuPont, General Electric, Pfizer, and IBM for the Partnership for american Innovation, which aims to convince members of the United States Congress to dial back some of their proposals on patent reform in order to protect their own patents.

Inspired by Microsoft, Apple applies for a Surface-style keyboard patent

Apple likes to create stunningly beautiful technology, but sometimes it may appear that they are simply imitating others and slapping on the word “Magic” or “Super” to create unique branding. This situation may be the case with a very Microsoft Surface-style keyboard cover that Apple is trying to patent. We say 'trying' because Apple is only applying for the patent, but they have not yet been granted one. That process could take months or even years before it is approved.

Nokia and HTC settle all litigation, sign massive patent and technology deal

Hot off of the wire, Nokia and HTC have set aside their differences. All past and current patent litigation issues between the two companies have been dropped. Nokia and HTC have just entered into a patent and technology collaboration agreement.

Details below.

Microsoft finally receives a design patent for Windows 8 Start Screen

Technology moves fast, but the United States government isn’t exactly as quick. Microsoft had originally filed a patent for the Windows 8 start screen in September 2011 (there was some initial confusion at the time on what it meant). The first release of Windows 8 was on October 25, 2012, so in essence, the patent was filled over a year before the operating system appeared on the market.

The design patent itself has just been approved with a stamped date of January 28 2014 – over two years after it was submitted for approval.

German court shuts down one of Nokia's patent suits against HTC

In a somewhat unexpected twist to this never-ending battle between Nokia and HTC, the Taiwanese company has scored a win in Germany with the courts closing down Nokia's patent suit. The case covers a patent relating to technologies enabling mobiles phones to receive calls while downloading over-the-air-updates.

Microsoft patents "Touch-Aware Skin" - wants to make tablets aware of how you hold them

Microsoft wants to know where your hands are at all times, and has filed a patent to do so. A new patent filed by the Redmond based company depicts a device that is able to sense a person’s grip on the border of a tablet. The patent itself shows “Skin Sensors” embedded around the entire screen border and filed under what Microsoft is calling “Touch-Aware Skin”.

Samsung extends patent agreement with Nokia for a further 5 years

Nokia has today announced the company has managed to have Samsung sign an extension to the party's patent licensing agreement. This extension will last a further five years, with the original agreement expiring at the end of this year. One thing is uncertain, however; just how much will Samsung be forking out to the Finnish company?

Nokia receives preliminary ITC ruling against HTC, may lead to a US import ban

One of the many legal battles involving smartphone manufacturers is Nokia suing HTC over several patent infringements. Nokia filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission (ITC) claiming HTC encroached on several patents with their Android based devices. 

Through the course of the litigation several of the claims were dropped leaving three patent claims to be ruled on. An Administrative Law Judge with the ITC has issued a preliminary ruling against HTC on two of the three remaining patent claims which very well could lead to a U.S. import ban against HTC.

With the Nokia deal, Microsoft become a juggernaut in patents for smart devices

We’re still going through all the details of the recently announced Nokia acquisition by Microsoft and are getting a clearer understanding of all the implications of the transaction. Needless to say, Microsoft is going to come out ahead of this deal and it will be something for its competitors to take note in the morning.

The biggest impact is of course Nokia’s favored patent portfolio, which was already wielded as a weapon against their Android rivals in addition to Microsoft’s treasure trove of license agreements. But just as interesting, Microsoft sees the deal with Nokia as boon for its OEM business and they are expecting the acquisition to help with OEM opportunity.  

The Google & Microsoft lifestyle: a match made in hell

The War

There was once a time when being a heavy Google services user and a Microsoft fan was the easiest choice on the block. The boys in Redmond could provide a robust and productive operating system platform while the Mountain View search cowboys could back you up with web services. Now, the two companies are going head to head and it might just be causing a hellish nightmare for consumers.

Court denies Google appeal against Microsoft's German injunction over multi-part text message interface

I know what you're thinking, "Oh, not more patents!" Believe me, we wish we could simply forget about the business altogether and focus on technology and innovation, but we're talking about multiple corporations here. Microsoft is battling it out against Google and are currently in a strong position. This has been reinforced with ZTE becoming the 20th company to have taken a royalty-bearing Android license. 

Today the Munich Higher Regional Court rejected Google's (Motorola) appeal against Microsoft's injunction against Motorola, which was granted back in 2012. The patent in question is EP1304891 on "communicating multi-part messages between cellular devices using a standardized interface." The lower court's ruling has now been affirmed by the appeals court and so the injunction remains in place for the foreseeable future.

Microsoft will make money for every Android device made through Foxconn

Level with me. You’re civil and fairly polite here in the comments on Windows Phone Central. But on other sites you’re a Microsoft fanboy. Don’t worry, there’s one deep down in all of us. Here’s some fodder for the next little flamewar you start with your Android frenemies – Microsoft will pocket dough for every single Android and Chrome OS device that Foxconn makes.

Nokia was working on a Surface-like tablet before it was cool


Since first being captivated by the beauty and excellence of Nokia's Lumia family of Windows Phone devices, people having been wondering if Nokia would follow Microsoft's lead by creating a Windows-based tablet, like the Surface. While we're nowhere closer to learning the answer to that question, what we do know is that Nokia had their sights on building a tablet back in 2011.

Nokia halts Google's VP8 codec dream with patent infringement assertions

Nokia has made an intellectual property rights declaration to the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) with respect to Google's VP8 data format and decoding guide, listing 64 granted patents and 22 pending patent applications. VP8 is Google's dream to create a royalty-free codec, but it's reportedly not open standard and Nokia is having none of it (to see why, check quote below). The company is already seeking injunctions against HTC in Germany over two VP8 patents.

Nokia on the offensive, wins German patent injunction against HTC

Just as many gamers have shouted over the headset in excitement, "BOOM! HEAD SHOT!" Nokia has won a patent injunction against HTC in Germany. Yes, we're aware that many of you have grown tired of such news being covered, but it's a Windows Phone OEM being attacked by another, so it's certainly worth noting exactly what's going on.

It's reported HTC has since disabled the patented power-saving technique in question on affected hardware. This change will lead to poorer battery life, further hurting the Taiwanese product line which incorporates Qualcomm baseband chips. The company is fighting back and it's believed a deal will be struck between the two parties at some point.

Nokia loses "flagship" patent decision against HTC in Germany

Today in Germany, the District Court of Mannheim ruled that HTC was not guilty of infringing on two patents owned by Nokia, including one involving the use of Google Play on HTC Android devices. The patent (EP0812120), which nebulously covers a "method for using services offered by a telecommunication network, a telecommunication system and a terminal for it," was one that HTC called the "flagship patent" in the suit that alleges over 45 intellectual property violations by HTC.