Microsoft just announced a major deal with Samsung. Microsoft and Samsung are to cross-license the patent portfolios of both companies, providing broad coverage for each company’s products. Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will receive royalties for Samsung’s mobile phones and tablets running the Android mobile platform. In addition, the companies agreed to cooperate in the development and marketing of Windows Phone.
“Through the cross-licensing of our respective patent portfolios, Samsung and Microsoft can continue to bring the latest innovations to the mobile industry,” said Dr. Won-Pyo Hong, executive vice president of global product strategy at Samsung’s mobile communication division. “We are pleased to build upon our long history of working together to open a new chapter of collaboration beginning with our Windows Phone “Mango” launch this fall.”
So Microsoft managed again to make money from Android. Samsung could now be save from Apple because they have access to Microsoft patents. On the other hand Samsung is already working out another way to get rid of Android with the new Tizen OS project.
Microsoft already collects royalties from HTC and others for their Android phones. Microsoft's General Counsel Brad Smith actually has posted some background information on the patent licensing deal. This is already the 7th patent licensing deal with Android device makers. Microsoft sees licensing as the future of how to deal with patents in the future. For consumers it is certainly better that companies agree on license fees than fight for sales bans of devices.