Microsoft adds two more Android tablet makers to its patent-licensing list

Summary:Add Aluratek and Coby Electronics to the list of Android and Chrome OS tablet/PC makers who are paying MIcrosoft patent royalties.

Microsoft has added yet two more companies with Android- and Chrome OS-based products to its patent-licensing list.

The latest additions, which Microsoft announced on July 9, are Aluratek and Coby Electronics. Microsoft officials said as of today's latest signees, "Microsoft has licensed more than 70 percent of all U.S. Android devices."

As part of today's deals, Microsoft will be receiving undisclosed royalty payments from both vendors.

Aluratek makes Android-based tablets, e-book readers, digital picture frames and other consumer electronics devices. Coby  makes Android-based tablets and netbooks, TVS, and other consumer electronics devices.

Microsoft's claim is that Android and Chrome OS violate publicly-unspecified Microsoft patents and companies that are choosing to build products around these Google operating systems are making a risky bet.

Microsoft has convinced a number of Android and Linux-based device makers that it's better and cheaper to pay than fight.  Among those companies with Android- and Linux-based devices that have capitulated are Amazon, Buffalo, Compal, General Dynamics, HTC, LG Electronics, Samsung, TomTom, Velocity Micro and others.

Barnes & Noble was a holdout, refusing to sign a patent deal with Microsoft, but a coule of months ago, opted to settle and sign with Microsoft. Microsoft invested $300 million in a new joint venture with B&N as part of that settlement.

Topics: Legal, Microsoft, Mobility, Tablets


Mary Jo Foley has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications, including ZDNet, eWeek and Baseline. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008). She also is the cohost of the "Windows Weekly" podcast on the TWiT network. Got a tip? Se... Full Bio

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