Microsoft and Samsung have come to terms and ended a dispute over patents and royalty fees regarding Google’s Android operating system using a number of patented Microsoft technologies that are claimed to be implemented within Android.
Under its previously signed 2011 cross-licensing agreement for Android smartphones, Microsoft alleged that Samsung began to cease payments beginning in September of 2013 once Microsoft began the purchase process for Nokia’s Devices and Services group, which was formally integrated into Microsoft proper in 2014. Samsung signed its own patent licensing agreement with Nokia in November of 2013 independent of the 2011 Microsoft patent agreement and initially expected the Nokia agreement to remain valid until 2018.
Android OEMs pay Microsoft a royalty to use the patents in question, which were leaked in the past year as a result of the Chinese regulator approvals process for the Nokia purchase and integration into Microsoft. Samsung abruptly halted making payments after Microsoft began acquiring Nokia, claiming the company violated the terms of their royalty agreement by becoming a direct hardware competitor. The terms of the settlement were undisclosed with Microsoft and Samsung issuing the following joint statement:
“Samsung and Microsoft are pleased to announce that they have ended their contract dispute in U.S. court as well as the ICC arbitration. Terms of the agreement are confidential.” – Samsung’s Jaewan Chi, Executive Vice President and Global Legal Affairs & Compliance Team and Microsoft’s David Howard, Corporate Vice President and Deputy General Counsel.