Microsoft have settled an long-running dispute with InterTrust over patents relating to content protection – namely, setting permissions on content for buying, copying and downloading digital content. InterTrust sued MS in 2001 after talks to license their technology failed.
MS have agreed to pay $440 million (€369 million) to put this one to rest.
An anonymous source at the BBC said to Digital Lifestyles: “Interesting … particularly where a MS spokesperson says that ‘patent issues were the responsibility of MS not their customers’ …that one will come back to haunt them.”
It appears that Microsoft are tying up loose ends so they can concentrate on new business – also, Digital Lifestyles see an interesting synergy with the Linux/SCO case.
We believe Microsoft will contrast their recent intellectual property settlements against the currently unresolved SCO source code dispute. Demonstrating that Windows is litigation-free compared to the potentially dangerous disputes surrounding Linux and potential additional licensing fees might entice businesses away from the open source operating system towards a (law-wise at least) “safer” Windows.
You heard it here first.