Patents and the harm they do is a subject that is often mentioned on the TechBytes show. With that in mind, it was a few months ago that I wrote about Microsoft settling for scraps off the table from its more successful competitors. Its also alleged that Microsoft is making more money from Android than it is from its own unpopular Windows Phone 7.
Today its reported that Microsoft has been at it again, this time they are sucking money from General Dynamics Itronix:
Neither company disclosed details of the deal, but General Dynamics Itronix makes a wearable computer called the GD300that runs on Android. The device, launched in 2010, can be used as a standalone GPS unit or — when hooked up to an appropriate radio — as a tactical mission computer.
Like a parasite, Microsoft feeds off another, yet can you blame them? Windows Phone 7 isn’t the Iphone killer that Microsoft PR would have you believe and that’s just one “cog” in its product catalogue. Microsoft has battles all across the board, its firing in all directions and all the while its competitors are coming out with products that people want to buy.
To me it’s very telling that Microsoft doesn’t go after Google directly. I wonder why that is? Could it be like the schoolyard bully they pick on those smaller than themselves, knowing full well that their patent claims won’t be tested in court? Could it be that Microsoft knows exactly how much “worth” there is in their claims and knows Google would fight back.
And Microsoft wonders why its name is mud with many in the tech world? To me these actions show Microsoft as a parasite and coward. If you feel you can justify Microsoft’s actions then I’d love to hear from you. If you can’t, then maybe you are as disgusted as me how Microsoft is allowed to carry on like this.
ZDNet ends on a rather pertinent point which says it all:
ZDNet UK has asked both Microsoft and General Dynamics Itronix to explain which patents are covered by the new licensing deal, but had not received this information at the time of writing.
I said this in IRC over the weekend – if Microsoft could take the pennies from a begging mans pot with threat of a patent action, they would.
I wonder who else they will leech off in their fall from grace in the tech world?
If you are new to this blog (or have not yet read it) please take time to view the OpenBytes statement, here.