In a somewhat ironic twist, Microsoft seems to profit much more from Android royalty deals than it ever has with its own mobile platform. During the second quarter of 2012 alone, Microsoft earned a staggering $800 million from Android royalties. Adding to the Android royalty dollars, Sharp has just agreed to a pay an undisclosed sum to Microsoft in order to license the use of the exFat file system, in which MS holds the patent rights.
Why is exFat so crucial that companies like Sharp are willing to pay for the right to use it? Without the extended file allocation table format, the largest file size you could have would be 4GB while using FAT storage, a pretty big limitation when it comes to large media files and videos. Sharp is now part of a growing group of companies willing to pay MS to use the format, which contains members such as Canon, Panasonic, Sony Tom Tom and Aspen Avionics. Just how much profit MS has been able to make off of Android shows just how important Android is, companies aren’t jumping ship to alternative platforms like Microsoft’s own Windows Phone to avoid paying fees and instead are sticking with everyone’s favorite little android robot.