ITC Initial Ruling Finds Motorola Infringed On 1 Out Of 7 Microsoft Patents (Or Didn’t Violate 6 Out Of 7)


In what could be seen as a loss for Motorola (and is being reported as such from various media outlets), the International Trade Commission has just announced their initial ruling on Moto’s alleged patent infringement — declaring that Motorola violated 1 of 7 Microsoft patents (number 6,370,566) that dealt with “generating meeting requests and group scheduling from a mobile device.” Which sounds downright basic in terms of how the general populace uses their smartphones but I’m sure it’s more complicated than that. Apparently, 1 out of 7 isn’t too bad for Motorola, who chose to see the glass half full and issued this upbeat press statement:

Initial Determination from ITC Finds That Motorola Mobility Did Not Violate Six of the Seven Patents

Dec. 20, 2011

LIBERTYVILLE, Ill. – Dec. 20, 2011 – Motorola Mobility Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: MMI) (“Motorola Mobility”) today announced that it has received notice that the Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) in the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) action brought by Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) against Motorola Mobility has issued an initial determination. The ALJ determined that Motorola Mobility does not violate six of the seven Microsoft patents listed in Microsoft’s suit. The Company noted that Microsoft had previously dropped two patents from its original case which included nine patents.

“We are very pleased that the majority of the rulings were favorable to Motorola Mobility,” said Scott Offer, senior vice president and general counsel of Motorola Mobility. “The ALJ’s initial determination may provide clarity on the definition of the Microsoft 566 patent for which a violation was found and will help us avoid infringement of this patent in the U.S. market.”

Microsoft continues to infringe Motorola Mobility’s substantial patent portfolio and Motorola Mobility has active patent infringement litigation and proceedings against Microsoft in a number of jurisdictions, including the ITC. Motorola Mobility remains confident in its position and will continue to move forward with its complaints.

The ALJ’s initial determination is subject to further review by the ITC. The final decision in this case, based on the deliberation of the full ITC, is expected by April 20, 2012. The ITC’s final determination ruling would be subject to a 60-day review period by U.S. President Obama. The Company noted that sales outside the U.S. are not within the focus of the ITC.

Business Risks

This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements about the impact of this litigation and future actions with respect to this litigation. Forward-looking statements involve certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in such forward-looking statements, including but not limited to the successful defense of the claims by Microsoft and protection of the company’s intellectual property; the timing of the matters before the ITC; the company’s continued ability to sell its mobile device products; and the other risks and uncertainties contained and identified in Motorola Mobility’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”), any of which could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements included in this press release are made only as of the date hereof Motorola Mobility does not undertake any obligation to update the forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances or update the reasons that actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in forward-looking statements, except as required by law.


Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. I am so done with these patent fights. I’m not reading one more post like this until one comes around that’s big enough to get play on cnbc.

  2. That actually IS god news! Microsoft and Apple patent trolls are so unbearable and ridiculous. Motorola will hopefully find a workaround on that one so that Microsoft isn’t making any more money off Android. Right now they’re making more off of the Android phones HTC sells (because of another patent suit with HTC) than they are off of Windows Phone 7. Now that’s just sad, and pathetic.

  3. If Microsoft used these patents in the lawsuit against Motorola, then it means it must be some of their “best” patents. So is this what they are using to get Android manufacturers to pay? Ridiculous.

    Most of their patents deemed worthless in this trial. If Android manufacturers were smart, they’d all sue Microsoft to get out of the extortion program.

    1. The patents were not useless, they were non-infringing in this case. How valid they are is another issue. Manufacturers can’t sue MS over Android patents. Google owns those ones. At some point Google needs to go after MS and Apple. Funny, how MS and Apple have not gone after Googe, but rather after individual manufacturers.

  4. Can’t we all just get along?

  5. That’s the problem with these patent cases. Most of the time, they ARE actually infringing on patents.  The problem is that the patents are so ridiculously broad that they should never have been granted in the first place!

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