updated 06:53 am EDT, Fri July 27, 2012
MS wins injunction against Moto smartphones in Germany
Microsoft landed another blow against Google-owned smartphone maker Motorola, reports Foss Patents. Judge Andreas Voss of the Mannheim Regional court has issued a ruling on a Microsoft FAT (file allocation table) patent and found that Motorola's Android-powered devices infringe on the patent. Moto's Droid and Atrix smartphones on sale in Germany have now been banned as a consequence pending a 10 million euro bond being posted by Microsoft .
"Today's decision, which follows similar rulings in the U.S. and Germany, is further proof that Motorola Mobility is broadly infringing Microsoft's intellectual property," reads a statement issued by Microsoft. "We will continue to enforce injunctions against Motorola Mobility products in those countries and hope they will join other Android device makers by taking a license to Microsoft's patented inventions."
The patent covers the ability for a device to index files with long and short name indexing and affects how files can be transferred between two devices. Although Motorola tried to argue that it should be covered under FRAND, the Judge held the view that as other options are available to Motorola, this argument diid not hold.
Motorola are appealing the decision, hoping to have a stay issued on the injunction. Frustratingly for Google and Motorola, the patent is due to expire in the 2014. According to Florian Mueller, Motorola will find it hard to have a stay issued as the patent has previously survived challenges on its validity.
It is likely that, instead, the company will need to implement a new file system in order to work around the patent - how this will affect existing customers is unclear at this time. Alternatively, it could join Samsung, HTC and others in paying Microsoft licensing fees to use the technology embedded in the Android code.