theodp writes “After initially rejecting Microsoft’s File Allocation Table (FAT) patents, the USPTO has ruled them valid. From the article: ‘Microsoft has won a debate where they were the only party allowed to speak, in that the patent re-examination process bars the public from rebutting arguments made by Microsoft, said unimpressed Public Patent Foundation President Dan Ravicher.'”
Original post at /.: http://yro.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/01/11/0555252&from=rss
If you think this will not have any effect on consumers, think again. FAT is used in almost all consumer electronics (yes, that’s your cellphones, pda, digital cameras). Yes, you wouldn’t have to pay Microsoft, but manufacturers will have to – the price will escalade to consumers, where else?
- A license for removable solid state media manufacturers to preformat the media, such as compact flash memory cards, to the Microsoft FAT file system format, and to preload data onto such preformatted media using the Microsoft FAT file system format. Pricing for this license is US$0.25 per unit with a cap on total royalties of $250,000 per manufacturer.
- A license for manufacturers of certain consumer electronics devices. Pricing for this license is US$0.25 per unit for each of the following types of devices that use removable solid state media to store data: portable digital still cameras; portable digital video cameras; portable digital still/video cameras; portable digital audio players; portable digital video players; portable digital audio/video players; multifunction printers; electronic photo frames; electronic musical instruments; and standard televisions. Pricing for this license is US$0.25 per unit with a cap on total royalties of $250,000 per licensee. Pricing for other device types can be negotiated with Microsoft.
Ooops they did it again 🙁