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Like many companies that have found themselves in Microsoft's legal crosshairs, HTC probably did the math and realized that right or wrong, settling with Microsoft would be far less expensive than fighting it in court.
Microsoft isn't the only company that sees Android as a big old hunk of infringement: Apple sued HTC earlier this year for patent infringement in Android, and Oracle sued Google on the ground that Android infringes on its Java patents.
Microsoft has never revealed specifics about its Linux patents, and its patent cross licensing agreements with other companies are typically cloaked in non-disclosure agreements. This is one reason why companies that sculpt their own Linux implementations keep running into legal problems with Microsoft.
"I'd be really surprised if Motorola or Google implemented the 'invention' in question after reading Microsoft's patents -- it's far more likely that it was an obvious implementation decision and they hit a patent landmine," said John Locke, principal consultant at Freelock Computing, a Seattle-based open-source consultancy.
Of course, Motorola is no mom-and-pop shop, and it might be willing to fight Microsoft's claims. Motorola, in a statement sent to media outlets Friday, said it had yet to see Microsoft's complaint and was unable to comment.
Next: Motorola's official statement