Microsoft Inks Patent Licensing Deal with Pegatron

These days, Microsoft is in the news more for its patent purchases and licensing deals than for its products. It recently acquired a boatload of patents from AOL and sold some of them off to Facebook.

It has one of the largest patent portfolios in the world, and generates a significant amount of revenue through patent licensing agreements.

Its most famous target — Android — is expected to generate more than a billion dollars in licensing revenue for it every year. It already has licensing deals with most top Android device manufacturers, which cover more than 70 percent of all Android devices sold in the U.S.

Today, it announced that it had entered a patent agreement with Pegatron, covering its products like eReaders, smartphones and tablets which run the Android or Chrome platforms. Pegatron is one of the largest ODMs, and could generate a sizable amount of licensing fees for Microsoft in the coming years.

While the exact details of the deal haven’t been revealed, Pegatron could be paying Microsoft around $5-$10 for every Android/Chrome device that it ships.

“We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Pegatron and proud of the continued success of our Android licensing program in resolving IP issues surrounding Android and Chrome devices in the marketplace. With this agreement, Microsoft has now licensed four of the top five Taiwanese ODMs,” said Horacio Gutierrez, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel, Intellectual Property Group at Microsoft.

Apple iPad 3 Coming in March, Made by Pegatron?

While all other tech giants are trying to market their products on the crowded CES stage, Apple is getting coverage without lifting a finger, thanks to new rumors about the iPad 3, which is expected to be launched soon.

A new report by Digitimes suggests that Pegatron Technology, Apple’s new favorite Taiwanese OEM, will be manufacturing the iPad 3. It has already received a small volume of orders for the iPad 3, which is expected to be launched in March 2012. Pegatron will now focus on iPad production, while Foxconn will focus on iPhone production.

Pegatron has multiple clients including Apple, Asus, Toshiba, Acer, Fujitsu, Lenovo etc. It recently announced its quarterly results, with 31% revenue growth year-on-year. Assuming that the iPad 3 is a hit, which is very likely, Pegatron’s revenues will jump even higher in 2012.

The report also suggests that Apple will be launching the iPad 4 in October, right before the holiday season. Pegatron is expected to get an initial order of about 7-10 million iPad 4 units too.

While Digitimes’ reporting is hardly reliable, it’s highly likely that Apple will launch the iPad 3 in March, going by its yearly schedule in the past. However, a new iPad 4 in October is highly doubtful.

For now, check out our complete CES 2012 coverage: Techie-Buzz @ CES 2012

Apple Ups iPhone 4S Orders to 15 Million Following Huge Demand

When Apple unveiled the iPhone 4S, most of the tech enthusiasts I know let out a collective sigh. Everyone, including me, was hoping that Apple would launch an iPhone 5, but instead, Apple launched an upgraded version of the iPhone 4, which looked exactly like its predecessor.

However, the iPhone 4S is much powerful than the iPhone 4 when it comes to hardware, and its new AI assistant feature — Siri — is really impressive.

The iPhone 4S broke all of Apple’s previous records on the first day of pre-order availability, selling more than 1 million iPhone 4S units. Apparently, Apple underestimated the potential demand for the iPhone 4S too. It had ordered around 10 million units from Pegatron, its hardware partner in Taiwan earlier. A report in Digitimes states that Apple has now revised its iPhone 4S unit orders to 15 million, in anticipation of greater than expected sales.

Pegatron is also ramping up its manufacturing capacity, in anticipation of orders to manufacture the iPad 3 from Apple, which is expected to launch next year.

Looks like Apple is going to prove all the naysayers wrong. Again.

You can check out our complete coverage of the new iPhone 4S here – Apple iPhone 4S

15 Million iPhone 5 Units Ordered for September Launch?

Apple has supposedly placed an order for 15 million iPhone 5 units with Pegatron, its primary supplier in Taiwan, according to Digitimes, the most prolific source for Apple rumors.

According to most rumors, Apple will start shipping the iPhone 5 (or the iPhone 4S) in September 2011. Placing such a huge order now would ensure that there are no supply shortages for the next version of the iPhone, for which the anticipated demand is extremely high.

Pegatron has significantly expanded its plants, human power and equipment since 2010, to complete the orders for the CDMA iPhone 4 by Apple. It has also been trying to get orders for the production of the iPad and the Macbook from Apple, but it hasn’t had much luck there.

Apparently, the iPhone 5 “does not seem to have any major update from iPhone 4″, which leads me to believe that it might be branded the iPhone 4S after all.

iPhone 5

The iPhone 5 / 4S is expected to come with a dual core A5 processor, a larger 4 inch display and an 8 MP camera with a dual LED flash. It will compete with Android heavyweights like the Samsung Galaxy S 2 and the HTC Sensation.