Another day, another story about the ridiculous patent wars being waged by big name tech companies. Samsung’s been the target of hostility by Apple in courtrooms around the world, as the Cupertino company files injunction after injunction to try and block Galaxy Tab sales over an infringement claim. Maybe that legal specter was hanging over Samsung’s shoulders; today, the Korean company agreed to a royalty deal that will have Samsung giving cash to Microsoft whenever Samsung sells an Android-based device.
Reports say the deal could be worth hundreds of millions of dollars. No official figures were released, but rumors from folks in the know have put the payout amount at $10 to $15 for every Samsung Android device sold. Seeing as how Samsung has sold over 10 million Galaxy S II phones alone in the past six months, Microsoft could be receiving a very, very large check in the mail.
The deal gives Samsung licenses to Microsoft’s patent portfolio. While Microsoft has long claimed that the Android OS violates numerous Microsoft patents, it has never been proven in court. That hasn’t stopped Samsung and HTC – the two biggest Android phone suppliers out there – from agreeing to preemptive licensing deals with Microsoft in a move to minimize risk. As part of the deal, All Things D reports that Samsung has also agreed to continue supporting Microsoft’s Windows Phone operating system.