Microsoft announced, on Tuesday, that it is licensing its Extended File Allocation Table (exFAT) technology to Sharp for use with its Android handsets. exFAT is a successor of Microsoft's FAT32 file system and is commonly used across multiple consumer electronics and software platforms such as cameras, TVs, media centers, Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and others. Unlike its predecessor, which has a file size limitation of 4GB (gigabytes), exFAT offers a massive file size limit of 16EB (exabytes).
This new agreement places Sharp in line with other Android device manufacturers that license technologies from Microsoft. Adopting a widely accepted file system format allows Sharp's Android phones to easily exchange information from a variety of other consumer electronics. For example, with a TV that supports exFAT, you'll be able to transfer data between it and your smartphone by simply plugging it into the TV's USB port.
"Consumers today move from mobile phones, to PCs, to home entertainment systems throughout their day – and they expect their media to move as seamlessly across those devices as they do," said Horacio Gutierrez, corporate VP and deputy general counsel, Intellectual Property Group at Microsoft.
While the financial terms of this deal were not disclosed, it is interesting to note Microsoft embracing the licensing model whereas other companies have taken to litigation and fueled the patent wars further.
Microsoft Enters Licensing Agreement with Sharp
Microsoft licenses exFAT file technology to Sharp for use in products including Android phones.
REDMOND, Wash., Aug. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Microsoft Corp. has entered into an IP licensing agreement with Sharp Corp. to use the latest Extended File Allocation Table (exFAT). The agreement covers the use of exFAT in smartphones distributed by Sharp based on the Android platform. Today's deal marks continued momentum by Microsoft for its exFAT technology licensing program.
exFAT is a modern file system that facilitates large files for audiovisual media and enables seamless data portability for an easy interchange of files between desktop PCs and other electronic devices. exFAT improves on its predecessor, the FAT file system, and greatly expands the size of files that flash memory devices can handle – by more than five times over the previous technology. It also greatly increases the speed with which those files can be accessed.
Today's agreement allows Sharp to incorporate the latest file system from Microsoft in its product portfolio and deliver faster response times and greater storage capabilities to consumers around the globe.
"Consumers today move from mobile phones, to PCs, to home entertainment systems throughout their day – and they expect their media to move as seamlessly across those devices as they do," said Horacio Gutierrez, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel, Intellectual Property Group at Microsoft. "This agreement allows Sharp to continue to stay ahead of the curve and give people around the world entertainment and productivity experiences that truly fit their lifestyles."
Microsoft's Commitment to Intellectual Property Collaboration Microsoft offers flexible IP licensing programs that give companies access to many of the foundational technologies in its own products, allowing those companies to build devices, applications and services that work seamlessly with one another.
Since Microsoft launched its IP licensing program in December 2003, the company has entered into more than 1,100 licensing agreements and continues to develop programs that make it possible for customers, partners and competitors to access its IP portfolio. The program was developed to open access to Microsoft's significant R&D investments and its growing, broad patent and IP portfolio.
Microsoft has entered into similar exFAT patent licensing agreements with several leading consumer electronics manufacturers through its IP licensing program, including Panasonic Corp., SANYO Electric Company Ltd., Sony Corp. and Canon Inc.
More information on Microsoft's IP licensing program is available at https://www.technobuffalo.com/e?link=https%3A%2F%2Fclick.linksynergy.com... and information specifically related to Microsoft's exFAT licensing program is available at https://www.technobuffalo.com/e?link=https%3A%2F%2Fclick.linksynergy.com...
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
SOURCE Microsoft Corp.
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