Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 7th Nov 2013 10:04 UTC, submitted by mbpark
Microsoft

Microsoft is generating $2 billion per year in revenue from Android patent royalties, says Nomura analyst Rick Sherlund in a new note on the company.

He estimates that the Android revenue has a 95% margin, so it's pretty much all profit.

This money, says Sherlund, helps Microsoft hide the fact that its mobile and Xbox groups are burning serious cash.

Microsoft has not written a single line of Android code, yet rakes in the profits through scummy software patents. Crime does pay.

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RE: Comment by Nelson
by Valhalla on Thu 7th Nov 2013 17:16 UTC in reply to "Comment by Nelson"
Valhalla
Member since:
2006-01-24

A 'master stroke' would be creating product value with which they could actually compete against Google in the open market place, but they can't so they instead turn to whatever dirty tactic they can come up with (all in the grand old Microsoft tradition), which in this case means software patent aggression and smearing campaigns.

I find them a shitty company through and through, they are even so far gone that they are now backing Oracle's insane attempt to have API's be copyrightable.

How any developer can stand behind such a company is beyond me.

In a world where certainly no tech company is a saint, Microsoft truly belongs at the bottom of the barrel.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Comment by Nelson
by acobar on Thu 7th Nov 2013 19:01 in reply to "RE: Comment by Nelson"
acobar Member since:
2005-11-15

Microsoft is a huge company and as so it is an amalgamation of distinct, sometimes unrelated and on other competing interests. I am sure there are people inside MS that don't like situations like those with Android royalties and current form of software patents. Unluckily, the top management and the lawyers are not between them.

Who is going to prevail in the end? My bet would be on Google. SCO failed against Linux with all the help Microsoft could provide, Oracle failed against Google, again with help from MS and Apple, and Nokia/MS may very well fail also.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Nelson
by Nelson on Thu 7th Nov 2013 19:44 in reply to "RE: Comment by Nelson"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

They are monetizing a competitors product and using it to finance their own product. That's strategic genius. Your rant aside.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[3]: Comment by Nelson
by acobar on Thu 7th Nov 2013 22:44 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Nelson"
acobar Member since:
2005-11-15

That's strategic genius.

I don't think "genius" is the proper word on this case but the strategy is lawful. And so was also slavery in some of humanity history. :-p

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by Nelson
by Valhalla on Fri 8th Nov 2013 02:27 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Nelson"
Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24

They are monetizing a competitors product and using it to finance their own product. That's strategic genius.


That you consider the act of patent extortion to be 'genious' says a lot about you, it's a simple form of a shakedown which has been around for ages.

In reality it's nothing genious it at all, it's just a matter of being willing to stoop so low as to use the insanity that is todays software patents to try and attack your competition.

Of course Microsoft is on the forefront of such behaviour, as it's seemingly part of their DNA.

And while Google can put up a defence, that is not something the vast majority of tech companies can, which means that the huge tech companies who amassed these ludicrous 'patents' (and obviously had a huge hand in having software patents made legal to begin with) are now using it to try and destroy competitors that they would otherwise have to compete with in an open market.

Even going so far as to purchasing a bunch of third-party patents all in an effort to attack a competitor with which they can't compete by the value of their own products, -'if we can't create products consumers want, we must instead try to remove the other products!'.

The end result is a very bleak world for developers and entrepreneurs, but even more so for consumers, as when there is no competition to speak of, you are effectively locked to a platform because there are no viable alternatives, with technology stagnation and high prices as the result.

This is what software patents ultimately brings us, a future where the entire software market is controlled by few large tech entities who owns and continously file new broad patents to encompass any possible functionality with which they can easily crush any smaller company through threat of long costly legal battles.

And even if a small company would end up winning, 'there's always another broad software patent to litigate with'.

Again as a developer I can't understand how people who claim they are developers can stand behind this behaviour.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[3]: Comment by Nelson
by nej_simon on Fri 8th Nov 2013 07:06 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Nelson"
nej_simon Member since:
2011-02-11

I guess it depends on whether you want a healthy competitive market or a few extremely rich companies that own the market.

In the latter case it could probably be considered "genius".

Reply Parent Score: 3