Microsoft now earns licensing fees from over 50% of Android phones sold worldwide

By on October 24, 2011
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Microsoft making more money from Android than WP7?

Yesterday Microsoft announced their new patent agreement with Compal, whose technological patents are licensed out to various Android based smartphones manufacturers. Microsoft now effectively earns money through licensing agreements on 53% of all Android smartphones sold around the world by working with 55% of Original Design Manufactuers of Android handsets.

On their blog, Microsoft’s Executive VP Brad Smith and Corporate VP Horacio Gutierrez wrote, “…today’s announcement means that companies accounting for over half of all Android devices have now entered into patent license agreements with Microsoft.”

While not a direct response to Google’s “When patents attack Android” blog post, the Microsoft post did say that, “For those who continue to protest that the smartphone patent thicket is too difficult to navigate, it’s past time to wake up.”

Many who will frown upon Microsoft’s actions will also want to know that they have paid up over $4.5 billion over the last decade in licensing agreements and fees to other companies. And while Android handset manufacturers are being targeted left and right by various companies, the messy Apple vs Samsung lawsuits coming to mind, including Oracle who have a direct lawsuit against Google, Microsoft’s passive licensing agreement comes as a much needed solution to this whole “software patent” issue the mobile industry is going through. Perhaps another jab at Google, Microsoft also mentioned with regards to their licensing agreements that, “These ensure that if our software infringes someone else’s patents, we’ll address the problem rather than leave it to others.” 


From auditing to editing, I now test and analyze the latest gadgets and games instead of the latest financial statements. Both jobs are equally intense and rewarding. When I'm not burning up hardware in the name of science, you'll find me nuking in DOTA 2 or engineering in TF2.

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