Feeds

MS calls for US patent reform

System threatened, Redmond claims

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Microsoft yesterday called for reform of the US patent system, claiming that the long-term health of the system is threatened both by a flood of patent applications and an "explosion of sometimes-abusive litigation". That's how MS general counsel Brad Smith put it during a speech to the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC.

Smith outlined proposals to reduce "abusive" patent litigation, create "more consistency among international patent systems [and] eliminate patent filing fees for individual inventors and small firms", the Seattle Post Intelligencer reports. He also called for more consistent funding for the US Patent and Trademark Office leading to "more quality in the patent process".

Microsoft is an energetic filer of patents, submitting more than 3,000 this year. It is an equally energetic patent defendant, fending off 35 to 40 patent lawsuits at any given time at a cost of $100m a year, according to Smith.

Perhaps the most notorious patent dispute involving Redmond is its spat with Eolas regarding "a method of opening third party applications within a browser".

The case saw Microsoft slapped with a $565m penalty for allegedly infringing an Eolas patent. However, the US Court of Appeals last week sent the case back for a new trial. A delighted Redmond says it will "now be able to tell the jury the whole story of how this technology was developed and to present evidence that shows that Eolas did not invent this technology, and that it was developed by others". ®

Related stories

Appeals court hits rewind in Microsoft Eolas case
MS Eolas appeal begins
Microsoft wins another Eolas web patent battle
Eolas' web patent nullified
US Patent Office will review Eolas claim
Microsoft fined $520m for infringing patents

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Not appy with your Chromebook? Well now it can run Android apps
Google offers beta of tricky OS-inside-OS tech
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.