Microsoft will receive money for every Android and Chrome OS device made at Foxconn

Android stopped being free a long time ago for OEMs due to the legal efforts of Microsoft. The company has convinced many device manufacturers, including Samsung and HTC, to pay Microsoft a royalty fee for its patents related to how the Android OS works.

Well it seems it's now the ODMs' turn. Microsoft has announced it has entered a patent licensing deal with Hon Hai, the parent company of Foxconn. You may have heard of Foxconn due to the dispute over working conditions from the last year or so, but this is also the place where many of the world's electronics are made. The Redmond company will now receive royalty payments for every Android and Chrome OS device that comes out of Foxconn, including but not limited to smartphones, tablets and TVs.

“We are pleased that the list of companies benefitting from Microsoft’s Android licensing program now includes the world’s largest contract manufacturer, Hon Hai,” said Horacio Gutierrez, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel of the Intellectual Property Group at Microsoft. “By licensing both brand name companies and their contract manufacturers, we have successfully increased the overall effectiveness and global reach of the program.”

The details of this deal are undisclosed and they will probably remain so for a very long time. But it's a big deal and this will put further pressure on Android OEMs as the additional cost will most likely be passed onto them.

Source: Microsoft Via: WPCentral

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I have to pay provincial tax, federal tax, gas tax, house tax, income tax, and a few other less frequent taxes.

I even have to pay 13% Canadian tax on the 8% US tax that I already paid when I buy something from USA to Canada

And from today I also have to pay Microsoft TAX 2013 Mobile Edition

Next year Microsoft will figure a way to make us pay Microsoft TAX 2014 Business edition, Enterprise Edition, and ULTIMATE TAX EDITION

The ultimate edition comes with 2 people that will hold you upside down

I am a Software Developer, and I use Microsoft Software, but I do not recommend Microsoft!

As a software developer I'm sure you can understand when you develop something for yourself or for a commercial interest, you wouldn't appreciate it if someone else takes your work for free without even asking and earns money from it. Or would you?

More companies need to have patent licensing deals like this and leave the suing/banning products out of it. But that is wishful thinking.

The impression I got was that an effort to establish a licensing deal is usually made at the start. Sometimes talks break down, and the only remaining option is the legal route.

techbeck said,
More companies need to have patent licensing deals like this and leave the suing/banning products out of it. But that is wishful thinking.

I should patent the process of going to the bathroom, I think it will make money, will require a Monthly subscription to use that patent.

What patents is this referring to? I just don't see how this is possible when Microsoft was last to the party in regards to mobile platforms. iOS came before Android/Chrome OS, which came before Windows Phone, right?

68k said,
What patents is this referring to? I just don't see how this is possible when Microsoft was last to the party in regards to mobile platforms. iOS came before Android/Chrome OS, which came before Windows Phone, right?

Not really

68k said,
What patents is this referring to? I just don't see how this is possible when Microsoft was last to the party in regards to mobile platforms. iOS came before Android/Chrome OS, which came before Windows Phone, right?

Primarily, it'll be the FAT filesystem patents that Android and ChromeOS use to access SD cards.

Android is a version of Linux for mobile platforms. All Linux distros can access FAT file systems. They've been able to for years. I don't see how Microsoft can call this their own. I don't expect Microsoft make any money from Mac OS sales.

68k said,
Android is a version of Linux for mobile platforms. All Linux distros can access FAT file systems. They've been able to for years. I don't see how Microsoft can call this their own. I don't expect Microsoft make any money from Mac OS sales.

MS have sued Linux distro's too, you know. As for Mac, MS and Apple have a cross licensing deal, so they couldn't if they wanted to.

68k said,
What patents is this referring to? I just don't see how this is possible when Microsoft was last to the party in regards to mobile platforms. iOS came before Android/Chrome OS, which came before Windows Phone, right?

Microsoft was in mobile well before the current Windows Phone era.

I know. I've had a few Windows CE/Mobile devices myself.

So 20 years after FAT16 was introduced, Microsoft are asking for royalties. To me, Microsoft just was $$$. Windows Phone and Windows 8 didn't go as well as they were hoping, so they want to make up the money "lost" by other means.

If I were Google, I'd sue Microsoft for copying Maps and Search technologies.

Umm.. Microsoft haven'y -just- started requiring people to license their tech. They've -always- required it. Anyone using the FAT filesystem, even digital camera's, have to license.

Why should they give away their property?

Also, Google didn't invent maps or search technologies. They just did their own versions of things that already existed.

68k said,
If I were Google, I'd sue Microsoft for copying Maps and Search technologies.

Microsoft had Terraserver in 1998- months before Google was founded. Google didn't invent online maps.

Okay, I agree with what you're saying now. I guess companies should try pushing an open disk format to avoid the royalty fee!

68k said,
Okay, I agree with what you're saying now. I guess companies should try pushing an open disk format to avoid the royalty fee!

they did try, and its called UDF http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Disk_Format .
its possible to use UDF for non optical media,
even the old win98SE might able read such media properly, as reported here: http://www.msfn.org/board/topi...sk-drives-under-windows-98/

but for some reason, the use of UDF for non-optical medias hardly mentioned.

FloatingFatMan said,

Primarily, it'll be the FAT filesystem patents that Android and ChromeOS use to access SD cards.

exFAT to be more precise. FAT is avail for all platfoms I believe without licensing. eXFAT was designed my Microsoft to have the same capabilities as FAT, but be faster and handle larger amount of storage, like the 64GB microSD cards.

That is why for a long time, most phones only use 32GB sdcards because FAT works up to 32GB on those types of media. FAT32 supports larger storage devices, but for some reason isn't implemented on smartphones.

TechieXP said,
exFAT to be more precise. FAT is avail for all platfoms I believe without licensing. eXFAT was designed my Microsoft to have the same capabilities as FAT, but be faster and handle larger amount of storage, like the 64GB microSD cards.

That is why for a long time, most phones only use 32GB sdcards because FAT works up to 32GB on those types of media. FAT32 supports larger storage devices, but for some reason isn't implemented on smartphones.


All FATs are (co) designed by Microsoft.

And for those, Microsoft indeed sued distro's for using FATs etc. But unsuccessfull due to Linux being free. IPs are basically free to use when there is no (direct) commercial interest. Google has been abusing this with android and the OEM's and maybe soon the manufactures are paying for it.
Microsoft developed allot of tech, some of it is free to use, some of it requires a license.

Why can't Google evade MS's patents? Use Ext4 for file system where FAT32 is in use, automatically install the drivers when the device is plugged in via update etc. Stop using other patents too, get work arounds. I am sure Android will continue to be fine.

Edited by rwx, Apr 17 2013, 10:18am :

Google can't use Ext4 for SD cards though, otherwise most people wouldn't be able to read them when they take them out of their smartphones & tablets.

Does it really matter? One would mostly want to use their files on their devices. When you are at home, you can copy/paste between your device and your computer because your computer would have the drivers. I wouldn't worry reading them outside work. But then again, one could use WiFi file transfer or FTP to get the files of the phone to a work computer. The process can be simplified for average users and I mean really simplified. With a click of a button, a web browser window opens that reads your phone.

rwx said,
Does it really matter? One would mostly want to use their files on their devices. When you are at home, you can copy/paste between your device and your computer because your computer would have the drivers. I wouldn't worry reading them outside work. But then again, one could use WiFi file transfer or FTP to get the files of the phone to a work computer. The process can be simplified for average users and I mean really simplified. With a click of a button, a web browser window opens that reads your phone.


A web browser window? if the OS cant read the format, it cannot read its data, so how is it going to copy it?
You will need to use client tools, then why not load the ext driver?
Its not Microsoft's duty to support every drive formatting. And not their fault the ext driver is horrible.

Microsoft are very clever, even though they obviously want their own platform to flourish they can just sit back and still rake in the money as their competitor flourishes. Genius!

Xerxes said,
Microsoft are very clever, even though they obviously want their own platform to flourish they can just sit back and still rake in the money as their competitor flourishes. Genius!

that's exactly what any other company does, not just MS. if they have the patents, people that want to use these, will have to pay.

"Rake in the money" more like picking up Android's table scraps, lets be honest. They're nonexistent in mobile and will continue to be.

Xerxes said,
Microsoft are very clever, even though they obviously want their own platform to flourish they can just sit back and still rake in the money as their competitor flourishes. Genius!

It doesn't help Windows Phone Store though.

There's a minor detail missing: MS has left it in the hands of the OEM and ODM to decide who's going to pay in the case that both parties have licensing agreements with MS (since only ONE party must pay royalties/lic fees)

georgevella said,
There's a minor detail missing: MS has left it in the hands of the OEM and ODM to decide who's going to pay in the case that both parties have licensing agreements with MS (since only ONE party must pay royalties/lic fees)

Thank you for the update. I was just wondering about it.

About as funny as someone throwing you a quarter every time they bang your mom.

Android is still dominating, brains.

MVD said,
About as funny as someone throwing you a quarter every time they bang your mom.

Android is still dominating, brains.


the only reason android is successful is because google controls it down to every bit. I mean if you think about it your brains all dominated by google. Microsoft, Google... there is nowhere to scape. you know what I mean?