Barnes & Noble Sued by Microsoft for Android - The UpStream

Barnes & Noble Sued by Microsoft for Android

posted Friday Mar 25, 2011 by Scott Ertz

Barnes & Noble Sued by Microsoft for Android

While Amazon continues to see great successes and launches new ideas, Barnes & Noble seem to be having some problems. Their Nook device, similar to Amazon's Kindle, minus the sales numbers and easy-to-read screen, has gotten them into trouble with Microsoft. The tech giant has filed suit against the bookstore for patent infringement in the Android-based Nook eReader.

The patents range from the way the apps show download progress to the way webpages are loaded. This isn't the first time Microsoft has sued an Android backer for features of the Google-developed operating system. In October, they took on Motorola for equally generic reasons. Neither time has Google been named directly, but this time the brand (Barnes & Noble) and the manufacturers (Inventec and Foxconn) are all named as defendants.

Hit the break to find out how the companies arrived at a lawsuit solution.

Originally, Microsoft offered to license the technology to Barnes & Noble to legally use their patented technology. B&N wasn't receptive, so the lawsuit was inevitable. Horacio Gutierrez from Microsoft's legal department, said,

Our firm view remains, however, that licensing is the best way forward for the industry, and we will continue to prefer the licensing path to litigation.

My guess is that licensing the technology isn't actually Microsoft's goal. I think Microsoft is trying to scare manufacturers off of Android and hopefully over to WinPho7. So far Motorola hasn't gone anywhere, but if enough of these lawsuits get out there, it could swing the mobile world in their favor.

While not the best way to push your platform into more hands, it might be a successful one. We'll see as time passes.

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