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Korean court rebuffs Microsoft in patents case

The old bilingual switcheroo

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Microsoft has taken another slap from the authorities in Korea, after a court decision in a patent dispure raised the prospect of Office being taken off the shelves in the country.

According to the Korean Times, the country’s supreme court on Friday upheld patents held by two Korean academics over technology for automatically switching between English and Korean. The academics reckon the Microsoft lifted their language switching technology in Office. They are demanding the offending versions of Office are pulled from the market and are seeking around $75m in damages from the vendor.

Microsoft said it was continuing to dispute the patent’s validity. Whether the patents stand or not, Microsoft maintains its software does not infringe the patents.

Korea has not been the easiest market for Microsoft in recent years. It has been forced to ship a stripped down version of XP in the country, sans IM and media software.

Makes you wonder why you bother.®

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