Microsoft Seeks Bans on Motorola Imports


Microsoft and Motorola finally had their day in court, as litigation in the latest smartphone battle got underway Monday.

According to media reports, the software giant has approached the International Trade Commission to request that Motorola imports be banned from the US. 

In October, Microsoft filed an action with the ITC and in the US District Court for the Western District of Washington against Motorola, Inc. for infringement of nine Microsoft patents by Motorola’s Android-based smartphones.

Microsoft claims Motorola is infringing a number of basic patents from data synchronization methods to signal strength and battery power notifications, and has requested an ITC import ban on the popular Droid 2 and Droid X smartphones, in addition to several other Motorola devices, the International Business Times reported.

The Redmond, Calif.-based company’s complaint reportedly refers to the following six Motorola handsets: Motorola Droid 2; Motorola Droid X; Motorola Cliq XT; Motorola Devour; Motorola Backflip; and Motorola Charm.

Last week, Google announced its acquisition of Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion, but according to reports, Microsoft was also in talks with the mobile device company. However, Google reportedly outbid its rivals by offering more than a 60 percent premium. According to reports, Microsoft did not want Motorola Mobility’s hardware business but rather sought after Motorola Mobility’s numerous patents. 

Analysts have said the deal could put Google in a stronger position to compete head-to-head against Apple, which in many ways has set the standard for smartphones and tablets in recent years. 

The Google-Motorola Mobility deal is subject to closing conditions, such as regulatory approvals in the United States, the European Union and other locations, and the approval of Motorola Mobility’s stockholders. The transaction is expected to close by the end of 2011 or early 2012, according to media reports.

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Erin Harrison is Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives, for TMC, where she oversees the company's strategic editorial initiatives, including the launch of several new print and online initiatives. She plays an active role in the print publications and TechZone360, covering IP communications, information technology and other related topics. To read more of Erin's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Jennifer Russell

Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives

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