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Microsoft sues Samsung alleging contract breach

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Published : 2014-08-02 06:58
Updated : 2014-08-02 06:59



Microsoft on Friday sued Samsung in federal court claiming the South Korean giant had breached a contract over cross-license technology used in the fiercely competitive smartphone market.

"After becoming the leading player in the worldwide smartphone market, Samsung decided late last year to stop complying with its agreement with Microsoft," the US technology firm's deputy counsel said in an online post.

The complaint filed in New York federal court alleges Samsung is failing to make payments for patented Microsoft technology used in smartphones and tablets.

Samsung did not immediately respond to an AFP request for comment.

Microsoft contends the South Korean consumer electronics colossus is not adhering to a contract from 2011, and said it filed the court action after months of "painstaking negotiation."

The legal pact involved Samsung paying to use Microsoft intellectual property, according to the post by deputy counsel David Howard.

Samsung's smartphone sales have quadrupled since the contract was signed as the company grew from shipping 82 million Android-powered handsets in 2011 to shipping 314 million three years later, Microsoft maintained.

Samsung has become a smartphone goliath, and the biggest maker of handsets powered by Google's free Android software.

"Samsung predicted it would be successful, but no one imagined their Android smartphone sales would increase this much," Howard said.

"After becoming the leading player in the worldwide smartphone market, Samsung decided late last year to stop complying with its agreement with Microsoft."

After Microsoft made a deal last year to buy Nokia's smartphone business, Samsung stop abiding by the cross-licensing contract.

Samsung has been a longtime Microsoft partner, making an array of computing devices powered by the US company's software.

 "Microsoft values and respects our partnership with Samsung and expects it to continue," Howard said.

 "We are simply asking the court to settle our disagreement, and we are confident the contract will be enforced."  (AFP)

 

Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, visits Samsung Electronics' headquarters in Seoul in April last year. (Yonhap)

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