10 Oct Microsoft Vs Samsung in a billion dollar patent dispute.
Microsoft earn upwards of one billion dollars per annum from South Korean electronics company, Samsung. According to a legal filing made in August, Microsoft are bringing a lawsuit against Samsung’s breach of a licensed agreement. The lawsuit filing states that a deal was reached where Samsung would use Microsoft patented technologies in the creation of Android powered smartphones and tablets in return for making patent royalty payments over the course of seven fiscal years. According to Microsoft, Samsung was in breach of agreement by failing to make royalty payments on time (fiscal year two of agreement) and then refusing to pay interest on the late payment, the clincher; however, was the news that Samsung was considering refusing royalty payments for fiscal year three because of a violation of business collaboration Microsoft made when it planned to purchase smartphone company Nokia.
So far, the only dialogue surrounding this face-off is heavily representative of Microsoft’s point of view, to date the only statement Samsung has made remains to be that it “will review the complaint in detail and determine appropriate measures in response.”
It is reported that Microsoft made a billion dollars from the Microsoft-Samsung Android patent licensing deal in the year 2013 alone, not considering the earnings from other Android sales through ZTE, Foxconn etcetera.
It has been speculated that Microsoft Android patent holdings might be a weaker portfolio than one would assume, and although this case is interesting no matter what perspective you take on the situation, it is feared that this case against Samsung could actually harm Microsoft by reassessing the patented technologies it profits from.