Microsoft Now Making Money on Half of All Android Devices

By , Oct 23, 2011

Apple has been openly fighting against Android manufacturers for the past several months. The Cupertino company has accused handset makers like Samsung, HTC, and Motorola Mobility of infringing on its intellectual property.

A lot of people believe that Apple’s hoard of patent lawsuits are going to end up stifling innovation, but they’re not the only ones doing it. In fact, at this point, Android partners should probably be more afraid of Microsoft and its IP…

Neowin.net points to a blog post on Microsoft’s website that confirms the company has just scored its 10th license agreement with an Android manufacturer. Here’s an excerpt from the article:

“Today Microsoft announced its tenth license agreement providing coverage under our patent portfolio for Android mobile phones and tablets. Today’s agreement is with Compal, one of the world’s largest Original Design Manufacturers, or ODM. Compal is based in Taiwan, where it produces smartphones and tablet computers for third parties and has a revenue of roughly $28 billion per year.

Today’s announcement marks Microsoft’s ninth Android agreement in the last four months. More important, today’s announcement means that companies accounting for over half of all Android devices have now entered into patent license agreements with Microsoft.”

The article goes on to explain that the licensing deals are fair and respectful, but that’s hard to believe. Microsoft collects $5 for every Android handset that HTC sells, so you have to imagine it has similar agreements with the other companies.

Most cell phone manufacturers see low profit margins in the first place, so $5 per handset can’t be good for business. But since Android device makers are competition for Windows Phone anyways, this puts Microsoft in a win-win situation.

As Steve Balmer’s bunch continues to extort money from Android partners, you have to ask yourself: “Is Apple worse for Google’s mobile OS, or is Microsoft?” Either way, you can’t imagine that it can survive this onslaught of litigation much longer.

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  • rdqronos

    And this is why I tell my friends to get iPhones… because soon enough, Android won’t be available/won’t work.

  • pedant

    They are not “extorting money from Android partners”. They are licensing something that they own the rights to, to other companies who wish to be in the business.

    It’s not Microsoft’s, or Apple’s fault, if you look back far enough I bet you’ll find that the mobile phone manufacturers were doing this patent thing to themselves for years (cross-licensing trivia).

  • Jacksparrow

    Gotta hand it to Microsoft, wild billy stole dos and made tons of money off it. Then wild bill stole MacPaint and MacWrite, apple UI and called it windows. Now they don’t even need to steal anything just send lawyers. Haha google just built a business model for microsoft for free. Guess all those nerds who went for jobs at google are now slaves to mr. Softee.

  • http://www.idownloadblog.com Alex Heath

    That’s definitely the best photo of Steve Ballmer I’ve ever seen.

  • http://none Oh poop!

    I used to have no safari bookmarks before I started reading this website

    • http://www.idownloadblog.com Sebastien

      Thanks for making us the honor of having added iDB to your bookmarks :)

      • crazyyyishhh

        I didn’t say you were my new bookmark.

      • AppleBits

        You’re not my new bookmark, either. I’ve had it for a long time. ;)

      • al

        where is the like button?

  • UNTETHERING JAILBREAK NOW!

    Steve Ballmer looks like zombie getting excited over fresh brains!

  • Goofygreek

    Well, since htc and others make handsets for windows phone 7, I cant see this ending well for Microsoft.

  • Me

    Wow… “it can’t survive this onslaught […] much longer”. That’s an incredibly big statement to make and one I don’t agree with.

  • John Small

    Unix has had long and short filenames long before DOS ever did. How did Microsoft steal that patent?

    This gives me an idea for a new busniess model. Make a business of stealing other people’s ideas and sue other companies for using the ideas you’ve stolen. Pretty soon there won’t be any more ideas to steal and innovation will be buried with Steve Jobs.

    • shadow

      Why not? That’s what apple is doing too? Since it’s the business model for the 2 richest companies in the world…