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Microsoft and Google: The Gloves Are Off

August 4, 2011 No Comments

Being rivals in the same industry is bound to raise some bad blood in many situations. As is the case for Microsoft and Google. Google’s Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer, David Drummond published a blog post calling out Microsoft and Apple among others for buying out patents that will then require phone manufacturers to pay a $15 licensing fee per Android device made. He makes claims that Microsoft and the other companies shut Google out of the deal in an “anti-competitive strategy”.

But Android’s success has yielded something else: a hostile, organized campaign against Android by Microsoft, Oracle, Apple and other companies, waged through bogus patents.

They’re doing this by banding together to acquire Novell’s
old patents (the “CPTN” group including Microsoft and Apple) and Nortel’s old patents (the “Rockstar” group including Microsoft and Apple), to make sure Google didn’t get them; seeking  $15 licensing fees for every Android device; attempting to make it more expensive for phone manufacturers to license Android (which we provide free of charge) than Windows Phone 7; and even suing Barnes & Noble, HTC, Motorola, and Samsung. Patents were meant to encourage innovation, but lately they are being used as a weapon to stop it.

What I am sure that Drummond didn’t expect was a response. Brad Smith, Microsoft General Counsel wrote via Twitter:

As if Brad Smith hadn’t said enough Frank Shaw, Microsoft Head of Communications put the nail in the coffin with his response:

To add insult to injury Shaw also attached an email message between another Google Senior VP and General Counsel and Brad Smith in which it is clear that Microsoft did in fact try to get Google in on the patent deal.

Perhaps, as Senior VP of a Company Drummond should have made sure that his claims were true before ranting about it in a blog and making not only himself look dumb but also Google themselves.

Source: ZDNet








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