Earlier this year, concern by Chinese companies had the Chinese government put the Microsoft-Nokia deal on hold, but thankfully it looks like they have officially given the deal the green light as announced by China’s Ministry of Commerce. Earlier in March we had reported that the deal had been given the blessing to go ahead but we guess it is now official.
For those who might be unfamiliar as to why there might have been an issue with the deal, it’s because Chinese companies were worried that Microsoft would take advantage of Nokia’s patent portfolio and possibly hike up prices to license patents, some of which were considered to be standard-essential.
However it turns out that there was nothing to worry about as Nokia has not been requested to make any changes, nor has their compliance with FRAND been challenged either. These concerns are actually not new as countries like India, South Korea, and even Taiwan had their reservations about it.
In the case of Taiwan, they approved the deal on condition that Microsoft is not allowed to hike up patent licensing fees in order to force manufacturers to switch from Android to Windows Phone. This is because Microsoft currently holds several patents in which are required by Android OEMs and unlike Apple, Microsoft has managed to stay out of the courts by licensing its patents to the competition. In any case the Microsoft-Nokia deal is expected to be finalized later this month.