Samsung and Microsoft entered into a broad patent cross licensing agreement. The companies expect the agreement to accelerate their respective product development efforts.
Samsung Electronics is the largest publisher of United States patents in 2006 and owner of one of the largest U.S. patent portfolios.
Microsoft has sought patent agreements with a range of companies in an attempt to build bridges with an array of consumer electronics, telecommunications, computer hardware and Linux/Unix platform providers. In the past twelve months, Microsoft has announced similar agreements with companies such as Novell, NEC, Fuji-Xerox, Seiko-Epson and Nortel.
Through the agreement, Samsung will obtain access to Microsoft patents that may be practiced in a range of Samsung’s existing and future product lines, such as computer products, set-top-boxes, digital media players, camcorders, televisions, printers, and home appliances. In these product lines, Samsung and its distributors and customers may utilize Microsoft’s patents in Samsung’s products with proprietary software and Samsung will also obtain coverage from Microsoft for its customers’ use of certain Linux-based products.
Microsoft will gain access to Samsung’s patent portfolio relating to digital media and computer related inventions, for its existing and future products.
The specific financial terms of the agreement are confidential, but both parties will receive monetary payments compensating them for the value of their portfolios.