Google responds to Microsoft over patent issue

Posted on Aug 8 2011 - 10:41am by Julius

Last week, internet search giant Google wrote a blog post calling out Apple, Microsoft, Oracle and other companies for using “bogus patents” to try and fight its Android mobile operating system. Some of these patents include those which were acquired from Novell. Microsoft was then quick to respond to these accusations, saying that they tried to get the company to partner with them to purchase the Novell patents.

Google is now saying that there was an obvious reason for turning the offer down, which Microsoft left out. “It’s not surprising that Microsoft would want to divert attention by pushing a false ‘gotcha!’ while failing to address the substance of the issues we raised. If you think about it, it’s obvious why we turned down Microsoft’s offer,” Google’s Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer David Drummond said in a response to Microsoft’s post. “Microsoft’s objective has been to keep from Google and Android device-makers any patents that might be used to defend against their attacks. A joint acquisition of the Novell patents that gave all parties a license would have eliminated any protection these patents could offer to Android against attacks from Microsoft and its bidding partners.”

This means that by teaming up to purchase the Novell patents, Google would have them, but the patents cannot be used to protect Android because Microsoft has them too.

It will be interesting to see this issue’s outcome; Microsoft and Apple are targeting Google’s Android OS, as Microsoft sees it as a way to make more money and Apple seeing it as a threat to its iOS.

Microsoft is already charging Android phone manufacturers license fees for patents that relate to Google’s Android OS, which could generate a large amount of revenue each year.

Apple, on the other hand, is suing Android phone manufacturers, including HTC and Samsung, for infringing patents relating to its iOS.

Tit for tat? Perhaps. A sign of the times, definitely.


via: The Inquirer

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