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Motorola DROID X

Late last year, an U.S. International Trade Commission judge ruled that Motorola had infringed upon on Microsoft patent related to "generating meeting requests and group scheduling from a mobile device." We noted at the time that the judge's decision would be subject to review by the full Commission, and today it decided to uphold that ruling, meaning that Motorola now faces an import ban on its infringing Android products. The exclusion order is now subject to a 60-day review by the president. 

Both companies have issued statements on the news to All Things D. Microsoft is (unsurprisingly) pleased with the ITC's decision, saying that it hopes that Moto will be open to an agreement to license Microsoft's patents. Meanwhile, Motorola notes that it will still be able to ship devices during the aforementioned review period. Moto says that it plans to explore all of its options in regards to what it'll do in reaction to today's decision. The full statements from both companies can be found below:

  • David Howard, deputy general counsel for Microsoft: “Microsoft sued Motorola in the ITC only after Motorola chose to refuse Microsoft’s efforts to renew a patent license for well over a year. We’re pleased the full Commission agreed that Motorola has infringed Microsoft’s intellectual property, and we hope that now Motorola will be willing to join the vast majority of Android device makers selling phones in the US by taking a license to our patents.”
  • Motorola: “Although we are disappointed by the Commission’s ruling that certain Motorola Mobility products violated one patent, we look forward to reading the full opinion to understand its reasoning. We will explore all options including appeal.”

Now we'll have to wait to see what Motorola decides to do in reaction to the ITC's decision. Moto mentioned that it'll consider appealing the ITC's decision, but it could also decide to alter its products to remove the infringing aspect of its devices. Another option would be to take Microsoft up on its offer of a patent licensing agreement like we've seen several other manufacturers do. It'll definitely be interesting to see exactly what path Motorola ends up taking, so keep it locked to PhoneDog for more.

Via All Things D, FOSS Patents, ITC (PDF)


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