ADDING LINKS IS TEMPORARILY BLOCKED - if you want to add a link, just put a space in it so that it doesn't work. The admin will then fix the link for you very quickly. This will be fixed as soon as I have the new spam blocking system in place.

SitemapCountriesWhy abolish?Law proposalsStudiesCase lawPatent office case lawLawsuits

Microsoft royalty demands for Android and other non-Microsoft software

Jump to: navigation, search

Since their 2006 deal with Novell, Microsoft has been demanding that software distributors pay for permission to use unspecified patents. When Microsoft announces these deals, the press releases usually mention free software or GNU/Linux, seemingly in an attempt to create uncertainty around their competitor. Microsoft's activity is characterised by some as patent trolling (although they wouldn't fit the narrower term of non-practising entity).

Microsoft claims that 70% of the sales of Android devices include royalty payments to Microsoft.[1]

It is worth noting that users of Microsoft software are also paying patent tax.[2] These costs get passed on to the users.


[edit] List of companies paying

[edit] Racketeering

Mark Shuttleworth of Canonical Group has characterised this activity as racketeering:

Microsoft is asking people to pay them for patents, but they won’t say which ones. If a guy walks into a shop and says: “It’s an unsafe neighbourhood, why don’t you pay me 20 bucks and I’ll make sure you’re okay,” that’s illegal. It’s racketeering.[16]

[edit] Reasons why companies sign

This is maybe best explained with an excerpt from a story from Forbes magazine. When Sun told IBM that their claims of patent infringement were unfounded, IBM replied:

maybe you don't infringe these seven patents. But we have 10,000 U.S. patents. Do you really want us to go back to Armonk [IBM headquarters in New York] and find seven patents you do infringe? Or do you want to make this easy and just pay us $20 million?"

IBM got their money. (source Forbes: Patently Absurd)

[edit] Related pages on

[edit] External links

[edit] References

  1. Microsoft claims collecting royalties on 70% of all Android devices, Slashgear
  3. - -
  6. - - -
  10. BROKEN LINK, working copy in Google cache:

This wiki is part of the End Software Patents (ESP) campaign (donate). For more information, see:
>> (Main ESP website) <<
>> (News) <<

This wiki is publicly editable. (See: It's a pool of information, not a statement of ESP's views or policies, so no permission is required. Add your knowledge! (See: Help:How to make a good contribution)