Microsoft's Patent Pact -- with Samsung This Time

Lora Bentley

Microsoft is at it again. For the third time, folks in Redmond have reached an agreement with a vendor that includes patent protection for the vendor's customers as applied to code that Microsoft claims was improperly "borrowed" by Linux developers. Microsoft and Samsung signed a cross-licensing deal that gives each company the right to use code included in the other's patent portfolio.

 

As such, Microsoft will have access to Samsung's patents on digital media and other "computer-related inventions," according to a Computerworld report. Samsung, then, will be able to include Microsoft's patents in its consumer electronics and other products. Just how much each paid for the right to use the other's intellectual property remains undisclosed.

 

Microsoft critics are concerned that the deal gives added credence to Microsoft's claim that its intellectual property is illegally included in Linux, the story says. However, open source advocates such as the Open Invention Network would not comment on the development.



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