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Thursday, September 05, 2013
Microsoft Wins Patent Trial Against Motorola

Microsoft on Wednesday said a jury decided in its favor in the second of two trials in federal court in Seattle concerning Motorola Mobility's licensing of essential patents used in Microsoft products.

The jury agreed with Microsoft's claim that Google-owned Motorola broke agreements with standard-setting bodies to license certain patents at a fair and reasonable rate, according to Microsoft.

The jury awarded Microsoft about $14 million in damages, Microsoft said. That consisted of $11 million for the costs of relocating a warehouse in Germany due to an injunction on certain Microsoft products brought by Motorola in that country, and about $3 million in legal fees for fighting that injunction.

Microsoft argued that Motorola's initial demand was exorbitant and a clear breach of its agreement to charge reasonable and non-discriminatory terms - commonly referred to as 'RAND' - for technology that is an industry standard.

"This is a landmark win for all who want products that are affordable and work well together," Microsoft said in a statement.

Motorola plans to appeal.

Microsoft had previously won another Seattle trial, in which the judge found that the appropriate rate for Motorola to license certain wireless and video technology used in the Xbox game console was only a fraction of what Motorola had asked for.

Microsoft has been locked in a battle with Google to ensure that handset makers using Google's free Android phone operating system pay Microsoft a license fee. Most large handset makers, such as Samsung, LG and HTC, have agreed to pay Microsoft a royalty on Android handsets that Microsoft believes may infringe on its patents. Motorola, which was bought by Google last year for $12.5 billion, partly because of its trove of patents, is the last big holdout.

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