Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

Summary: Microsoft is suing smartphone maker Motorola Mobility for undisclosed reasons. But £20 of Her Majesty's best says it has something to do with Android patents.

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Microsoft late last year filed a lawsuit against smartphone maker Motorola Mobility at the High Court in London.

The court papers were filed on December 23rd, but do not outline the cause of Microsoft's claim. Neither company has so far issued a statement to detail the nature of the lawsuit.

A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed the litigation, but declined to comment on the matter.

Unlike the United States where court documents are immediately in the public domain, it can take around two weeks -- if not longer -- for court papers to be made available to the general public.

The defendant -- in this case, Motorola Mobility -- must serve their 'acknowledgement of service' documents within 14 days of the plaintiff's complaint made to the court, a legal expert told ZDNet.

However, Microsoft filed the suit only three days after the U.S. International Trade Commission preliminarily ruled in its favour, after the software giant claimed devices running the Android mobile operating system infringed its patents.

Microsoft had been seeking to prove that Motorola Mobility infringed seven of its mobile patents, ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley reported.

A final decision by an U.S. ITC judge is expected later this year.

Motorola Mobility is close to being bought by Google, which put forward plans last year to buy the company for $12.5 billion.

The U.S. Department of Justice has yet to make any formal or public comment on the acquisition. But the European Commission's antitrust regulators have suspended its merger review as it seeks further information about the deal before it can proceed.

The regulators, which Google needs approval from to close the acquisition deal, also invited competitors and "interested third parties" to submit comments and observations on what it should do next. This move allows rivals to openly object to the deal, in what could be an anti-competitive matter.

But shares in Google fell nearly 4 percent at market close yesterday after poor expected financial results reflected on the company's bid to acquire the smartphone maker.

Google will be able to benefit in future patent litigation, as the search giant will acquire one of the largest patent portfolios in the telecommunications industry.

Motorola did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Image source: Flickr.

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Topics: Security, Microsoft, Mobility, Wi-Fi

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40 comments
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  • I'm sure that

    the British will stand up an fight this frivolous lawsuit brought by M$ against innovation.
    The Linux Geek
    • I would expect you to still be one using "M$"

      @The Linux Geek
      Why do you just post troll garbage? Seriously.
      $Google$ has innovation? What, they have their own OS? Oh wait, no they only have Linux derivatives that have either been the buggiest OS ever released upon mankind (honeycomb) or created the biggest and worst case of fragmentation to ever hit the market. Now everyone can see clearly that open source is an epic fail, except for maybe free utilities and generic tools. I love open source for that, but I use a real OS for doing work, thank you.
      Ummm, since Apple is now worth more than MS, you might want to figure out a cute little thing like O$ X.
      xuniL_z
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @xuniL_z
        stop posting M$ talking points and ask yourself why Android is the leader in the CE space.
        The Linux Geek
      • Probably for the same reason YOU do, ummmm

        @xuniL_z So you decide what tech is best based on the company making the most profit ?
        radleym
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @xuniL_z <br>both apple and MS used hugely twice free BSD (free like in freedom and free like in a free drink) to make their OSes, and sell others work to hoard heaps of billions $ ; better to favor originals than copies.... <br>dan
        dan-r
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @xuniL_z We all know, that you are the f... troll!!

        Google is much more innovative than Micro$oft, Google is the only main competitor to M$ and so Google must be supportet. Be glad, that we have Google, stopping Micro$oft to overtake the browser, the internet or the Cloud !!! First think, than post .....
        Watchmen247
      • Well well, a gaggle of geeks,

        Linux Geek, you will never learn to do research before you make a blanket statement.....the entire CE space eh? Care to back that up with data?

        radleym, of course I don't, I don't use Apple products, the wealthiest compan in the market. And I don't buy into Google products because they make billions (with the impact of youtube ads still not full realized) from running ads on the internet they are starting to monopolize. The same net they have conquered on the back of MS Windows. No Windows, no Google search, no Google. Same with Apple. No iTunes for Windows, No ipod/iphone/itouch market. Any other questions?

        Dan-r, does that mean you are a Unix user? Which Unix do you run on your desktop? Or are you admitting that Linus and Stallman both had copies of Unix and Minix when they wrote their respective pieces of Linux? Otherwise, Linux is 2nd Gen too, my friend. And if the former is true, I think someone has some splainin to do.

        Watchman247. Yeh, the competition is ok, but Google gives me the creeps. I've never seen a company, not even Apple sir, so money hungry. And read above to note Google had to use Windows as the platform from which, to this day, they still make their billions in ads. Isn't that ironic. I really don't think their ad revenue and wealth in total from Android devices is even more than .01% of their total profits to date. And running to the DoJ about MS constantly, then the open source zealots scream bloody murder when MS turns around wtih a legitimate complaint. You do know they'll have to introduce evidence of the patents in court, right sir? Google was always running to the DoJ just complaining and filing Anti compettitive behavior suits when MS was not even in their market space and they were getting a free ride on Windows at the same time!! Nothing that whiney and crooked flies with me. Bill Gates and gang, no matter what they did or didn't do (and the fact they equipped the entire world with PCs is a GREAT thing. Tell me who else had the model to do that during the 90s? Apple? Really?, at 5000.00 for a Mac. Right. So who? Linux was not even ready for anything until the last 6 years. If MS had not used their model, when they did, the ubiquity of PCs would be at least 10, if not 20 years behind. Prove that wrong sir.
        xuniL_z
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @xuniL_z : Don't put a copyright on "O$ X". OK? :-)
        Gisabun
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @xuniL_z

        what planet you living on dude ???? CES was dominated by Android and Linux, and lol @ buggiest os ever.............sorry but that crown goes to Microsoft........unfortunately its not all funny.

        http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/01/12/drone_consoles_linux_switch/

        What is osx based on ? BSD, surely not unix ??

        Now everyone can see clearly that open source is an epic fail.............thats not even worthy of reply............you are just showing your ignorance man.
        DejaVu2
      • Garyc......you missed the point on more than one occasion

        <i>what planet you living on dude ???? CES was dominated by Android and Linux, </i>

        I suppose if you were only looking at a particular segment of the "CE" industry. CES has the latest and greatest but does not represent the industry as a whole. Would you bet that there are more Android devices than all other CE products in the industry? While it's true to some devices use Linux, like the Wii for example I believe uses Linux (not postive) but I know that it is also proprietary so therefore is not opensource) Same with all game platforms. I believe game platforms alone are ahead of Android devices at this point in time, not to mention the myriad other CE products around the world that have nothing to do with Google nor OSS. Show me total industry numbers if you are going to toot your horn that loud, just like I asked your pal Linux Geek to do, and of course he didn't.

        <i>and lol @ buggiest os ever.............sorry but that crown goes to Microsoft........unfortunately its not all funny.</i>
        This is far too subjective and I did not go to your link, as I see you are a zealot because any true professional with an open mind woudl not go near the "bash Microsoft at all costs, including journalistic integrity" The Register. I will not go to site that is most like contaminated with adware let alone their one sided opinions and lack of anything called "news". I trust them probably less then You trust a Microsoft Press release.
        Windows was created in a time prior to internet ubiquity (which Windows caused, thankfully, or again we'd be 10 years behind now..see my other post for why) and was developed with the developer in mind, to be a highly productive system and that it was. It was not designed to be internet secure. But MS has come a long way and NT 6x is as secure as Linux or OS X. That comes from places like Ars Technia and the security industry and plays out at pwn2own every year. Android is supposed to be secure, yet honeycomb was a disasterous piece of software filled with bugs, true bugs, not just needed updates to get internet secure.

        Dan said that Windows and OS X are both from BSD and therefore "second" gen OSes, and he then stated why not use the original. That would be Unix. But I doubt Dan is using Unix. My point was that Linux is just as much second Gen as Windows or OS X.

        <i> Now everyone can see clearly that open source is an epic fail.............thats not even worthy of reply............you are just showing your ignorance man.</i>

        If you say so, man. But I would not bet WP7 and beyond out. The big players are making new phones for WP7 and the hell called "fragmentation" occurring in the Android market (I didn't just make that up, you know?) is driving a number of devs to write for WP7.
        Between honeycomb and the natural fragmentation, that I've been predicting would happen for years (for a different reason, i made that prediction when there were many flavors of Linux out there with basically equal support, but the OSS crowd, who are supposedly so loyal are jumping ship like rats to get to Android or Ubuntu. How dare you say these people and the technology is any better than windows and its' base?
        You are the one that is turning a blind eye after years of spouting about choice and all of that nonsense.

        Thanks.
        xuniL_z
    • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

      @The Linux Geek

      Only if it is frivolous... and it seems more and more likely that Google adopted a policy of "ask for forgiveness instead of permission" when developing Android.
      eak2000
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @eak2000 <br>that's FUD spread by the axis of evil software: M$, Apple & Oracle!
        See for yourself from a trusted source: http://techrights.org/2012/01/10/war-on-android/
        The Linux Geek
      • Linux Geek, stop, just stop with links to spam sites

        You are clueless. A site that actually prints M$ each and every time, has the journalistic ethics of a North Korean newspaper. <br>Stop pasting in your crap links to contaminated sites filled with fantasy and things that only a loser like you could get excited about. <br>
        xuniL_z
    • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

      @The Linux Geek : Get a life. Must be fun going around as a biased individual. Must be one of Tea Party right wing morons.
      Gisabun
  • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

    I hope that all of the MS-lovng anti-Apple ranters go and hide in the corner!
    Wakemewhentrollsgone
    • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

      @Habiloso - Hold on there, Hoss.

      You want all Microsoft loving, APPLE haters to go hide in a corner because Microsoft is sueing Motorola - a non-Apple hardware company - over an alleged patent infringement?

      Do you think <b>before</b> you reply?
      bitcrazed
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @bitcrazed
        I can see you use IE.
        kirovs@...
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @bitcrazed <br><br>Clearly, unlike you, I do think before I post. When Apple started suing over patent infringements, the MS-loving Apple-hating ranters were very vocal. Now, it's time for them to shut-up and hide in their corner.<br><br>EDIT:<br>And here is another article for the MS-loving Apple-hating ranters to choke on:<br>
        http://www.zdnet.com/blog/asia/chinese-workers-threaten-suicide-at-foxconn-not-8216why-but-8216is-enough-being-done/681?tag=mantle_skin;content

        or

        <a href="http://www.smh.com.au/digital-life/games/xbox-workers-threaten-mass-suicide-20120111-1pudj.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://www.smh.com.au/digital-life/games/xbox-workers-threaten-mass-suicide-20120111-1pudj.html</a>
        Wakemewhentrollsgone
      • Well kirovs@...

        @kirovs@...
        we can see what you don't use. ;)
        William Farrel
      • RE: Microsoft sues Motorola Mobility, bringing patent fight to UK

        @Habiloso MS have been licensing their patents to Android manufacturers for a while now, they aren't seeking to put these companies out of business by getting their products banned from sale.

        They are saying, that Android infringes on their IP and they would like to be compensated for it, which is a much more reasonable attitude than Apple.

        If the patents are invalid, then let the Android community prove that and then they won't have to pay MS to use their technology. As it is, most have signed deals already - although most of them are long-standing MS customers anyway, like Samsung and htc, which were making Windows smartphones long before Android came along.

        Just because a product is released under an open source licence doesn't mean it can ignore the law and infringe on the rights of others.

        I'm not a software and process patent fan, but as long as the patents exist (and some of the patents MS alleges are being infringed are at least partially hardware related, not just software or process patents).
        wright_is