March 21, 2007 6:00 PM PDT
Microsoft inks patent deal with Fuji Xerox
The companies did not disclose financial terms of the agreement, except to say that money will change hands. Funds will flow in both directions, Microsoft, but it declined to say which way it expects the balance to tilt.
Microsoft touted a similar deal with Seiko Epson in November and also announced one with NEC last May.
In a statement, the companies said Fuji Xerox will obtain access to Microsoft patents to use in products that include both proprietary and open-source software, such as Linux. Last November, Microsoft signed a deal with Novell that guaranteed that it would not sue Novell, or those who use its Linux distribution, for patent infringement.
"We are pleased to be able to reach a broad, mutually beneficial patent agreement with Microsoft that respects each company's patent portfolio, encourages greater interoperability, and provides valuable protection for the customers of each company's products and services," Fuji Xerox Senior Vice President Kiyoshi Saito said in a statement.
Microsoft, meanwhile, will be able to use Fuji Xerox technology in Office and other products, it said.
"This agreement is an example of our desire to share our innovations with other companies and build a stronger IT ecosystem through access to intellectual property," Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith said in a statement.
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