China's ZTE Corp, one of the world's largest smartphone makers, has
agreed to pay Microsoft Corp a royalty for devices it makes using Google
Inc's Android and Chrome operating systems.
ZTE is the latest in a
line of hardware manufacturers that have struck a patent deal with
Microsoft, which has successfully argued that Android - which Google
provides free to handset makers uses Microsoft-owned technology.
itself, and its Motorola phone maker unit, are the most notable
holdouts against a patent agreement with Microsoft. Those differences
could be settled soon, depending on the judge's verdict in a patent
trial in Seattle.
Reaching agreement with ZTE means Microsoft now has patent deals in place with four of the five leading Android phone makers.
It already has agreements with South Korea's Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and LG Corp, and with Taiwan's HTC Corp.
It has no deal with China's fast-growing Huawei Technologies Co Ltd.
ZTE deal marks progress for Microsoft with companies operating in
China, following last week's patent agreement with contract manufacturer
Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd, parent of Foxconn.
said it now has Android patent deals with about 20 device makers, and 60
percent of Android phones sold worldwide are covered by a Microsoft
© Thomson Reuters 2013