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Microsoft signs patent deal with Pegatron

REDMOND, Wash. (AP) -- Microsoft Corp. said Wednesday that it has agreed on a patent deal with Pegatron Corp. that covers smartphones, tablets and other devices running on the Android or Chrome operating systems.

Financial details of the pact were not disclosed, but it calls for Microsoft to receive royalties from Pegatron, which makes PCs, game consoles, TVs and other consumer electronic devices.

Patents give the holder the exclusive right to use certain technologies or business processes in the U.S. They can also opt to license those rights to other companies for royalties.

Microsoft has signed more than 1,100 patent licensing deals since 2003.

The software giant also has been active in acquiring patents.

Earlier this month, it agreed to pay AOL $1.06 billion in cash for 800 patents and related applications, as well as a license for the Internet pioneer's remaining patents.

Microsoft then turned around and sold most of the patents to Facebook for $550 million, while retaining a license to use the AOL patents.

Companies like Microsoft, Apple, Facebook and Google, are collecting large patent libraries and increasingly using them in lawsuits — to defend their businesses or to attack rivals.

Microsoft shares added 38 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $32.30 in afternoon trading Wednesday.