Xbox 360 Could Be Banned In U.S., Sounds Improbable

Xbox Live App Brings Remote Control

Even if the Xbox 360 is banned in the States, it’s going to come back pretty soon.

Microsoft’s console is threatening to banned from the U.S. because of a patent infringement cover a calendar app

That calendar app is called ActiveSync, which allows the app to be updated automatically. Motorola and Microsoft can’t decide on a settlement fee, prompting the International Trade Commission to say the Xbox 360 could be banned.

ActiveSync can be downloaded on some Android phones, and Microsoft has actually settled royalties with most companies. Motorola has offered to pay Microsoft 33 cents per Android phones using Activesync, while Microsoft would pay 2.5 percent for infringing Xbox 360s and 50 cents for every copy of Windows using the patent. I wonder if that covers Windows 8.

It’s not the only patent Microsoft is infringing, as there are patents that cover Wi-Fi and video decoding. The ITC has added that the company has infringed on four of five patents, and will therefore decide if the 360 shouldn’t go on sale in the U.S. It would be bad news for Microsoft because the Xbox continues to push forward in terms of sales, even with next-gen consoles expected next year. The ITC said imports would be blocked from China.

If you remember the Xbox 360 has already been banned in Germany, but that came back. I expect the same in the U.S.

Temporary Ban Looks Inevitable, But Don’t Worry

Microsoft didn’t accept Motorola’s demand because they were in excess of the market rates, and lambasted the company for leaking information to the press. It also said it won’t license the patents. Therefore the ITC said that Android devices and Xbox 360s infringing on the patent should be banned temporarily.

The summer is pretty quiet for game releases, so there could be a major slump for the console. This is where Microsoft’s positioning of the Xbox 360 as an all-in-one media device really helps, because there are reasons to buy the console outside of games.

Microsoft has pretty much dominated Sony in terms of sales for most of this generation, and with the Wii slumping – and soon to be proceeded by the Wii U – there’s little in the way of the console. I doubt this will dent sales, however.

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Jonathan is a writer on the technology and video game industries. He is comfortable with using Mac OS X and Windows; he began using Windows with Windows XP during his early double-digit years, and started using OS X in 2009 on a MacBook Pro. He began gaming on the SNES back in the 90s.

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