Microsoft Launches Online Tool To Let Others Track Its Patents

Redmond has recently been awarded US patents for its Surface tablet design as well as the Touch Cover, but these two make up just the smallest tip of a very large iceberg.

As one of the most important technology companies around, Microsoft invest an awful lot on research, development and innovation — and as such regularly ranks among the top companies that file and win software, hardware and design patents.

And now the company has just launched an online tool that allows anyone to quickly view and search through all the patents that it holds.

Microsoft’s general counsel Brad Smith made the announcement on the company’s official blog:

“We take this step today because we believe that all stakeholders of the U.S. patent system – private companies, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Congress and the courts – share responsibility for taking steps to improve its operation.

Sensible improvements to the patent system, such as increasing transparency on patent ownership, will yield tangible outcomes that enhance American competitiveness, create jobs and foster growth in nearly every sector of the U.S. economy.”

The web tool allows users to search for any patent Microsoft holds by patent number, patent title as well as country. Users can also check out whether the patent is held by the company directly or via one of its subsidiary.

Redmond has also put up a way to download the complete patent catalog via a download CSV (comma-separate values) format file that can be opened in Excel and searched through.

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