Google’s Android OS takes another blow.
The US International Trade Commission just issued a ruling on a patent complaint filed by Microsoft against Motorola. The ruling held that Motorola’s Android devices infringe a patent owned by Microsoft.
The patent involved is US Patent No. 6,370,566, that lets users “schedule an appointment anytime, anywhere, and invite others to attend, making easy use of email addresses and contact information and synchronizing calendars across their phone, PC and other devices”. The ruling of the ITC is said to affect a host of Motorola Android devices like the Razr, Atrix, Bravo, Charm, Xoom tablet, and Droid handsets.
Motorola issued a statement saying that it’s “very pleased that the majority of the rulings were favorable to Motorola Mobility” and that the “initial determination may provide clarity on the definition of the Microsoft ’566 patent for which a violation was found and will help us avoid infringement of this patent in the U.S. market.”
The ITC ruling is still mostly favorable to Motorola since majority of the features claimed to be infringing were ruled not to be. The solution here, obviously, is for Motorola to replace the infringing feature with another one that does not use Microsoft’s patent. Other Android manufacturers like HTC, Samsung and Acer already executed licensing deals with Microsoft and Motorola is one of the few that has not agreed to licensing.
Yesterday, it was HTC who received an adverse ruling from the ITC. The body imposed a ban on the sale and importation of HTC Android products, saying that it infringed a patent owned by Apple.