The next time you buy an Android smartphone, there's a good chance that you'll fatten Microsoft's bottom line. Windows Phone may be struggling, but a new patent deal with the Chinese giant mobile manufacturer ZTE means that 80% of all Android smartphones in the U.S. and the majority worldwide are covered by Microsoft patent deals.
Yesterday Microsoft signed a patent deal with ZTE, China's second-largest manufacturer of mobile phone equipment, for ZTE devices that use the Android and Chrome operating systems. Horacio Gutierrez Microsoft Corporate Vice President & Deputy General Counsel, Legal & Corporate Affairs, announced the deal on a Microsoft blog. The deal comes shortly after Microsoft announced a similar deal with the Chinese manufacturing company Hon Hai, which is Foxconn's parent company.
As a result of both deals, Gutierrez wrote:
"...we have successfully entered into license agreements with nearly all companies on the list of the world's largest Android smartphone vendors and their manufacturers. In fact, 80 percent of Android smartphones sold in the U.S. and a majority of those sold worldwide are covered under agreements with Microsoft."