Microsoft sues Kyocera over phones; seeks to bring US Injunction

Kyocera’s new phones Duraforce, Hydro and Brigadier have landed the company in a soup. The legal department of Microsoft has registered a case against Kyocera a Japanese manufacturer, in the US legal system. Microsoft alleges that the phones infringe seven patents that are registered with Microsoft and that Kyocera did not take any type of permission to use those patents.

Microsoft vs KyoceraMicrosoft vs Kyocera

Microsoft is pursuing the case in the US and has sought US injunction to ban manufacturing and sales of the said phones by filing a suit in the Seattle court. When a company seeks injunction, it practically means that it is asking the legal authorities to prohibit usage of one or more items related to a lawsuit. In this case, Microsoft approached a Seattle judge to impose a US injunction against Kyocera’s all three models that it says have infringed Microsoft’s patents.

Microsoft’s deputy general counsel David Howard said in a statement that Microsoft respects Kyocera, but at the same time, it believes that Kyocera needs to license the patented technology they intended to use in the mobile phones. He said Kyocera never contacted Microsoft for licensing.

All the Kyocera’s three phones – Duraforce,, Hydro and Brigadier – run on Android, making it more vulnerable to the lawsuit brought against it. In the past few years, Microsoft had secured different patent licensing deals with different handset makers over the world. The list includes Samsung that now offers Microsoft apps in place of its own home products, LG Electronics and HTC Corp.

In the lawsuit, Microsoft accuses of Kyocera of using patented technology for location services and text messaging. The case is pending in the US District court, Western District of Washington. For those interested in following the case, they can look it up in the registry for Microsoft Technology Licensing LLC vs Kyocera and Kyocera Communications Inc, 15-346.

There has been no comment from Kyocera so far, which might make people assume that it indeed had violated the patent licensing – aware or unaware – and might be looking for options before it. The best option is to get the technology licensing as it cannot dump away all the handsets manufactured under the three models indicated.

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Arun Kumar is obsessed with technology, especially the Internet. He deals with the multimedia content needs of training and corporate houses. He also offers online training for Business English. Follow him on Twitter @PowercutIN

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