Microsoft gets Nikon to sign up for Android patent agreement

Microsoft has once again gotten a company that sells products that use Google's Android operating system to sign on the dotted line to give Microsoft some money every time one of these devices is sold. The latest such contract is with Nikon, which sells some cameras than run Android.

Microsoft's press release, as usual, does not give any specific details on the new agreement with Nikon, saying only that Microsoft will receive some royalty payments from the camera company. David Kaefer, the general manager of Intellectual Property Licensing at Microsoft, is quoted as saying, "Microsoft and Nikon have a long history of collaboration, and this agreement further demonstrates the value that both companies place on responsible IP licensing."

Microsoft now has patent license agreements with the vast majority of companies that sell Android-based devices. and nearly all of them agree to give Microsoft money for the patents that those products use. Microsoft has also made similar agreements with a handful of businesses that sell products that use Google's Chrome OS. As we have reported before, the only major maker of Android products that has yet to sign a Microsoft patent agreement is Motorola, which is now owned by Google.

Source: Microsoft | Image via Nikon

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11 Comments

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pgn said,
Putting the tax on the thieves! Good Job Microsoft.

What are you talking about. Its a deal Microsoft has with others using their intellectual property. They do this to avoid legal issues. How are they stealing anything here.

yowanvista said,
Probably related to exFAT as usual.

Was thinking the exact same thing. That being said though those agreements must not be that brutal if company after company keeps signing them instead of even trying to use an alternative tech...

Obry said,

Was thinking the exact same thing. That being said though those agreements must not be that brutal if company after company keeps signing them instead of even trying to use an alternative tech...

It's suspected Samsung is paying MS between $5-$15 for every android phone they sell. MS made around $500 million from android licensing in 2011, I'd imagine that went up even more in 2012; in fact MS is making more money directly from android than google is. In the suit from Oracle I believe google claimed they have made around 550 million total from android's RELEASE all the way to 2012 - compared to 500 million revenue MS made in one year.

Obry said,

Was thinking the exact same thing. That being said though those agreements must not be that brutal if company after company keeps signing them instead of even trying to use an alternative tech...


Alternatives like ext4 could have been used but then naturally Windows doesn't natively support such open file systems and sdcards won't be readable although the less practical MTP mode can be used. Sounds like they don't really have any choice with Microsoft's monopoly.

yowanvista said,
Sounds like they don't really have any choice with Microsoft's monopoly.

That's the rub, there is a choice as there are Ext2/3/4 drivers available (among others) for Windows. It's not included out of the box no because it's a Microsoft OS, not an alternative.. not exactly on their shoulders to support something developed by third parties. Bundle or offer the drivers as a download, skip the fees for choosing to use a proprietary format and be done with it. Monopoly is a serious stretch here.

Max Norris said,

That's the rub, there is a choice as there are Ext2/3/4 drivers available (among others) for Windows. It's not included out of the box no because it's a Microsoft OS, not an alternative.. not exactly on their shoulders to support something developed by third parties. Bundle or offer the drivers as a download, skip the fees for choosing to use a proprietary format and be done with it. Monopoly is a serious stretch here.

All that and you still have an inferior file system structure! They should just pay up and get it over and done with. exFAT is a truly revolutionary file system (I work with embedded devices so I've used them all) and definitely worth the cash.

pgn said,

.... in fact MS is making more money directly from android than google .......

MS is making more money from Android than it is from WP

pgn said,

It's suspected Samsung is paying MS between $5-$15 for every android phone they sell. MS made around $500 million from android licensing in 2011, I'd imagine that went up even more in 2012; in fact MS is making more money directly from android than google is. In the suit from Oracle I believe google claimed they have made around 550 million total from android's RELEASE all the way to 2012 - compared to 500 million revenue MS made in one year.

Exists different alternatives for exFat that are compatible with exFat. However, MS is giving a big discount for those. So, in some case, is cheaper to pays to MS than to pay to other companies. Then, i don't think that OEM are paying $5 x device sold but a lot less if not a fixed value.