New Chapter For Microsoft Mobile Lawsuits: Barnes And Noble’s Nook

Barnes & Noble Nook Color

At some point, you’d think Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) will just have to sue Google (NSDQ: GOOG) directly. But its proxy campaign against Android shows no signs of slowing down, with a new lawsuit against Barnes and Noble (NYSE: BKS), makers of the Android-powered Nook e-reader.

The new suits were filed earlier today in federal court in Washington and allege that the Nook e-reader and Nook Color tablet infringe on mobile patents held by Microsoft. Microsoft is also suing Motorola citing similar patents, and managed to convince HTC to purchase licenses from Microsoft to avoid the threat of litigation.

And that’s exactly what Microsoft suggested the rest of the mobile industry do in a blog post Monday entitled “Android Patent Infringement: Licensing is the Solution.”

“By bringing this case, we are protecting our investments on behalf of our customers, partners and shareholders – just as other companies do,” Horacio Guitierrez, corporate vice president and general counsel at Microsoft, in the post. “Our firm view remains, however, that licensing is the best way forward for the industry, and we will continue to prefer the licensing path to litigation.”

The mobile industry is currently engaged in a maze of twisty legal briefs, with the aforementioned Microsoft versus Android lawsuits accompanied by dueling suits between Apple and Nokia (NYSE: NOK) over mobile patents. One of the key parts of Microsoft’s recent deal with Nokia for Windows Phone 7 devices was a cross-licensing agreement that will protect each company.

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