Microsoft wins US import ban on Motorola smartphones

Microsoft has won a major battle in its patent war against Motorola. The US International Trade Commission ruled today that some of Motorola's Android-based smartphones violate one of Microsoft's patents. The specific patent refers to "generating meeting requests” from a mobile product. As a result, the ITC ruled that all of Motorola's Android smartphones that are in violation of that patent are now subject to a decision that would prohibit "the unlicensed entry for consumption of mobile devices" in the US.

The ruling is still subject to a 60 day review by President Barack Obama who can reverse the ITC's ruling.

In a statement sent to Ars Technica, Motorola stated:

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. Motorola Mobility will not experience any impact in the near term, as the Commission's ruling is subject to a $0.33/per unit bond during the 60 day Presidential review period. We will explore all options including appeal.

Bloomberg Businessweek got a statement from Microsoft, which said, "We hope that now Motorola will be willing to join the vast majority of Android device makers selling phones in the U.S. by taking a license to our patents."

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Windows 8 to get some desktop UI changes

Next Story

Facebook ends first day of trading slightly above start price

29 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

And the patent abuse continues. It's about time the DOJ stepped in and stopped Microsoft's anti-competitive behaviour and extortion schemes.

and this is exactly why people want to see MS burn in the mobility sector, this is exactly what they did in the 90's with PC's, they sued everyone into the ground and monopolized the market to such an extent that if you wanted to use a computer your only viable choice was Windows. I don't want a repeat of that with mobile devices and I know that if given the chance MS would eliminate competition in a heartbeat and not by virtue of innovation or even good market but by ruthless and restrictive business practices that only hurt consumers

Sonne said,
and this is exactly why people want to see MS burn in the mobility sector, this is exactly what they did in the 90's with PC's, they sued everyone into the ground and monopolized the market to such an extent that if you wanted to use a computer your only viable choice was Windows. I don't want a repeat of that with mobile devices and I know that if given the chance MS would eliminate competition in a heartbeat and not by virtue of innovation or even good market but by ruthless and restrictive business practices that only hurt consumers

That sounds more like Apple nowadays. MS offered Moto the chance to pay up fair and square. Moto said no. Now they can pay the price.

TechJunkie81 said,

That sounds more like Apple nowadays. MS offered Moto the chance to pay up fair and square. Moto said no. Now they can pay the price.

Sounds nothing like Apple, who have climbed their way from the ashes to the top through innovation, great products and savvy marketing

google created android without a care in the world in terms of patent licensing, it's hardware partners get a sweet deal due to this (a free OS), but seeing as they are then making money with their products that run this OS which uses tech made and/or patented by other companies, they will have to pay these companies some money. Its dead dimples.

Look at what's going on with the oracle/google case, google didn't check once if they would need to license java for their OS, the emails even show head programmers saying they'd need to but that was ignored.

Sorry but they made their bed and are now lying in it.

MS gave Motorola a year grace period to work out licensing deal which Motorola and now Google couldn't give a crap about. So if the consumer is being hurt by all of this it lies squarely on Motorola and Google.

all the apple haters (MS fanboys typically) who raised their voices when apple tried to ban Samsung devices are eating their words now business is business, there is no nice guys, do what you can is the law of the land. (even though i personally don't agree with it)

rippleman said,
all the apple haters (MS fanboys typically) who raised their voices when apple tried to ban Samsung devices are eating their words now business is business, there is no nice guys, do what you can is the law of the land. (even though i personally don't agree with it)

Lol generalization much?

rippleman said,
yup.. generalizing is very efficient. I actually meant to say MS fans and Andriod fans.

Apple doesn't offer the "grace" of licensing a patent. They ban products. Microsoft says "Give us a little kickback and we'll let you sell your product"
Motorola refused to pay, so now their product is banned.

For proof, look at the barns and noble deal.

rippleman said,
all the apple haters (MS fanboys typically) who raised their voices when apple tried to ban Samsung devices are eating their words now business is business, there is no nice guys, do what you can is the law of the land. (even though i personally don't agree with it)

All the Microsoft, Samsung, Toshiba, Dell, HP, Acer, Lenovo, Asus, Sony, Gateway, Alienware, Roku, Tivo, Sling, WD, Google, Motorola, RIM, IBM, Cisco, Netgear, Linksys, D-Link, LG, Visio, Amazon, B&N, and Nintendo, haters (typical Apple fanboys) who raised their voices in glee when Apple tried to ban products from any of those companies (and more) never eat their words, because they believe that Apple has the right to sue and block anyone, but not in reverse.

nohone said,

All the Microsoft, Samsung, Toshiba, Dell, HP, Acer, Lenovo, Asus, Sony, Gateway, Alienware, Roku, Tivo, Sling, WD, Google, Motorola, RIM, IBM, Cisco, Netgear, Linksys, D-Link, LG, Visio, Amazon, B&N, and Nintendo, haters (typical Apple fanboys) who raised their voices in glee when Apple tried to ban products from any of those companies (and more) never eat their words, because they believe that Apple has the right to sue and block anyone, but not in reverse.

lol +1

It sounds like it means during the 60 day period, Motorola can pay $0.33 for every unit imported to continue bringing units in before the ban / appeal takes place.

The Reason the Consumer gets hurt is because Motorola refused to pay for patents. this is not Microsofts fault its Google and Motorola. just pay for the Dam Patent.

Richteralan said,
In the end, it's the consumer that get hurt. Yay us!

Richteralan said,
In the end, it's the consumer that get hurt. Yay us!

BS Consumers don't get hurt it only hurts Motorola and google. Anyways Motorola is also ran.

Melfster said,

BS Consumers don't get hurt it only hurts Motorola and google. Anyways Motorola is also ran.

Really? You think that prohibiting the import of a device which in turn removes those devices as options to consumers and therefore eliminates a source of competition which in turn negatively affects innovation and development, even in a limited capacity such as this doesn't hurt consumers?? If Motorola violated the patent then they should be punished but don't pretend that this ban doesn't affect consumers at all. Competition is a good thing, especially for consumers!

Melfster said,

BS Consumers don't get hurt it only hurts Motorola and google. Anyways Motorola is also ran.

If you could explain to me how Motorola paying money towards legal battles and licensing fees, or losing money due to loss of sales, rather than putting that money back into research and development to create better and more innovative smart phones to introduce to the market, I'd be happy to hear how this doesn't hurt the consumers in the end.

We are in desperate need of patent reform. The system, as is, really sucks. There is nothing wrong with protecting /your/ property, but should we own the right to be the only one that can do something a certain way? If Microsoft makes something, and someone else takes that and re-brands it as their own, /that/ should be illegal. If Microsoft puts a home button on the bottom of their phone, why shouldn't other companies be allowed to do that as well? No good reason.

Think of it this way: Every car has a steering wheel. Imagine if that was an enforced patent and only one companies cars were allowed to have them.

Melfster said,

BS Consumers don't get hurt it only hurts Motorola and google. Anyways Motorola is also ran.

ooo.....I can say the same thing when I get paid.

There are so many patents everywhere that all these companies need massive sections of employees just trying to make sure their products don't infringe any patents. This is just getting ridiculous.

Can you imagine in the 90's when that patent was filed, and people laughed because why would anyone generate a meeting request on a cell phone when you can just text or call about the meeting?

This patent is right, and Motorola should own up.

thenonhacker said,
<strong>Can you imagine in the 90's when that patent was filed, and people laughed because why would anyone generate a meeting request on a cell phone when you can just text or call about the meeting?

This patent is right, and Motorola should own up.</strong>

I never said that the patent is wrong. Just saying that these companies need to find other ways than just import bans and suing.

drazgoosh said,

I never said that the patent is wrong. Just saying that these companies need to find other ways than just import bans and suing.

Umm, they have, it's call cross-licensing agreements. Microsoft always negotiates before they litigate.

"Motorola Mobility will not experience any impact in the near term, as the Commission's ruling is subject to a $0.33/per unit bond during the 60 day Presidential review period. We will explore all options including appeal."

What does this mean?

BoyBoppins said,
"Motorola Mobility will not experience any impact in the near term, as the Commission's ruling is subject to a $0.33/per unit bond during the 60 day Presidential review period. We will explore all options including appeal."

What does this mean?

It means Motorola will have to pay a $0.33 deposit to the court for every handset they import.