Microsoft has been granted its 5,000th US technology patent, as it increasingly uses it intellectual property as...
a marketing pitch to new customers considering alternative open-source systems.
The latest patent to come Microsoft’s way relates to its Xbox 360 gaming platform. The patent describes technology that improves “spectator experience” in games.
With Linux and other open-source software users potentially open to litigation from companies claiming their patents have been violated in open-source software development, Microsoft keenly promotes the fact that its heavily patented software offers protection to users.
The ongoing SCO case against Linux suppliers and customers has helped Microsoft in its cause.
However, open-source advocates can point to the fact that Microsoft users have recently had to update two major Microsoft products in recent weeks, as a result of Microsoft becoming embroiled in patent disputes.
Users were forced to update their Microsoft Office suite after a court found that Microsoft had infringed a patent held by an individual relating to the way the Access database interfaced with the Excel spreadsheet.
In addition, users were recently required to update their Internet Explorer browsers, as Microsoft’s patent dispute with Eolas over interactive browser technology dragged on.