Amazon and Microsoft ink patent deal

February 23, 2010
Microsoft said it has signed a deal with Amazon.com that lets each company tap into the other's patented technology, including that for hot-selling Kindle electronic readers.

Microsoft on Monday said it has signed a deal with Amazon.com that lets each company tap into the other's patented technology, including that for hot-selling Kindle electronic readers.

Microsoft said that Amazon will be paying the software giant as part of the agreement, but declined to specify the amount.

"We are pleased to have entered into this patent license agreement with Amazon.com," said Horacio Gutierrez, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel for Intellectual Property and Licensing at Microsoft.

"Microsoft’s patent portfolio is the largest and strongest in the software industry, and this agreement demonstrates our mutual respect for intellectual property as well as our ability to reach pragmatic solutions to IP issues."

The agreement clears the way for Microsoft's and open-source programs used by Amazon.com to be woven together more tightly without concerns about patent violations.

Each company gets access to the other's patent portfolio under the terms of a deal covering a broad range of products and technology, Microsoft said.

Microsoft said it has struck 600 such licensing deals since December 2003 with companies including Apple, Hewlett-Packard, , Novell, and .

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