Back in 2012, a company named SurfCast filed a lawsuit against Microsoft claiming that the software technology giant had infringed on 52 of its patents with their Windows Phone and Windows 8 Live Tiles. Unfortunately for SurfCast, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board didn’t find its claims valid and ruled the case in favor of Microsoft.
The Patent Trial and Appeal Board didn’t think SurfCast’s claims were valid and further stated that SurfCast’s idea dubbed the following:
“Computer display that organizes content from a variety of sources into a grid of tiles that is constantly updated... [and is] ...obvious or anticipated in view of a host of references."
According to Microsoft’s attorneys, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board "found that each claim of the SurfCast patent that has been asserted as infringed in this court is invalid on multiple independent grounds."
Microsoft may have dodged a bullet here, as if it had been found guilty, we can’t imagine what it would have meant to its operating systems, which now heavily revolves around Live Tiles. Windows Phone’s home screen uses Live Tiles, and that’s one of its biggest features. Windows 8.x also employs Live Tiles in the Start screen. Microsoft’s forthcoming operating system Windows 10 too uses Live Tiles in both the Start screen as well as the Start menu.