Google withdraws patent claims in Xbox complaint

Google has requested that the US International Trade Commission withdraw two patent dispute claims lodged against Microsoft in a long-running legal affair.

The patents in question, which belong to Google subsidiary Motorola Mobility, relate to video compression technology and wireless networking innovations used in the Xbox 360.

Google had previously argued in court that Microsoft should pay up to $4b (£2.5b) per year for the use of the video coding and connectivity patents.

But the Xbox maker countered that they were only worth about $1m (£623,000) annually because the innovations have been recognised as critical to industry standards and should therefore be licensed on fair and non-discriminatory terms, the BBC reports.

The refusal of Microsoft to meet the patent owner’s terms led Motorola to file lawsuits in the US and Europe last year in an attempt to block several products from sale, including Xbox 360 and Windows 7 software, on the basis that the company’s rights had been infringed.

A German court initially granted an injunction against the distribution of certain Microsoft products in the country, but this was later blocked by a US appeals court, meaning Motorola couldn’t enforce the ban.

A Microsoft spokesperson said that the companies are still at loggerheads in their bid to determine suitable royalty rates for the patents. That dispute will now be settled in a US district court.

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