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Legal Defeat in Europe May Force Google to Deal with Microsoft
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After spending $12.5 billion to acquire the patents of Motorola, Google has lost to Microsoft before a German court which has ruled that Motorola has infringed patent rights of Microsoft related to text messaging. Consequently, Microsoft is now in a position to ban Android products in Germany. Microsoft’s win also has greater legal and financial ramifications as its successful arguments may be accepted in other parts of the world, stopping Android in its tracks. More importantly, rather than continuing to fight Microsoft, the Android players may have to deal with Microsoft now, to remain in operation.

Florian Mueller, a legal consultant tweeted today that “Google-Motorola will have to take a license, leave the German market, or face serious issues that affect app developers and users.” Mueller has been in on the legal consulting for Microsoft.

While, expectedly, Microsoft was pleased with the court’s decision, a Motorola representative issued a statement saying that the company would review the written decision, expected by June 1, and would then review its options before accepting any particular course of events. It is possible that the company would appeal. The statement said, “This is one element of a global dispute initiated by Microsoft,” referring to the case.


David Howard, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel for Microsoft issued a statement saying “We hope Motorola will be willing to join other Android device makers by taking a license to our patents.”

Microsoft had earlier won a similar ban on Android devices in the U.S., but Motorola, too, won a ban against Xbox 360 in the US market.

Microsoft’s win at this moment becomes significant, since, following Google’s purchase of Motorola’s patents, this win against Motorola translates to a win against Google. May be this court battle could spell an agreement between Google and Microsoft bringing relief to consumers across the world. After all, it is the end user who bears all the costs in the end.

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