Microsoft sued Barnes & Noble (together with Foxconn and Inventec) back in March of last year over five patents which are infringed by Android according to Redmond. The Nook-maker was using “patent misuse” to its defense against Microsoft but it looks like the judge didn’t see it that way.
The Administrative Law Judge at the ITC has approved Microsoft’s motion to dismiss almost a week before the evidentiary trial was supposed to start, being scheduled for February 6. The Office of Unfair Import Investigations, participating at the trial, sided with Microsoft against Barnes & Noble’s accusations that Redmond was asking “excessively high patent license fees”; the Office quoted the patent law which states that a patent holder isn’t required to grant a license on any terms.
On a different note, Barnes & Noble is “putting the final touches on their fifth e-reading device”, according to recent reports, “a product that executives said would be released sometime this spring”. No other details were mentioned and we’re left with the question on whether it will be an Android tablet of some sort or an e-book reader.