The Secret Android Patents That Microsoft Forces OEMs to License

Microsoft has long licensed a glut of patents to Android hardware makers for them to avoid litigation—and how the Chinese government has made public exactly what they are.

In total, China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) has revealed a list of more than 300 patents that Microsoft requires OEMs to license—at some considerable profit—in order that they avoid litigation over Android and Chrome OS. In fact, 127 of those are actually implemented in Android. The patents—from "Operating Touch Screen Interfaces" to "TV Program Database"—include some acquired as part of the Rockstar Consortium, and all the patents used by Microsoft to file a lawsuit against Barnes & Noble in the past. The list—which you can read here—was kept secret for a long time. The leaked version formed part of the application by Microsoft to buy Nokia, which had to be approved in China and elsewhere. [Mofcom via Verge]

Image by JD Hancock under Creative Commons license.