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Nokia, Microsoft Are Seen Benefiting From Samsung Ban

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Is that cheering we hear? Is that cheering we hear?

Nokia Oyj (NOK1V) and Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), both looking to increase U.S. sales of smartphones, stand to get a much-needed boost as Samsung Electronics Co. (005930) products face a possible ban and handset makers come under pressure to consider alternatives to Google Inc. (GOOG)’s Android software.

A federal jury awarded Apple Inc. (AAPL) more than $1 billion on Aug. 24, saying Samsung infringed on six of seven patents for mobile devices. U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh will weigh Apple’s request for a ban on U.S. sales of some devices from Samsung, the dominant maker of Android phones, next month. Some Android- equipment makers may turn to platforms such as Microsoft’s Windows 8 to avoid a similar trip to court, said Carolina Milanesi of the research firmGartner Inc. (IT)

“I am sure that vendors in the Android ecosystem are wondering how long it will be before they become Apple’s target,” Milanesi said in an interview. “This might sway some vendors to look at Windows Phone 8 as an alternative, and for the ones like HTC Corp. (2498) and even Samsung, who have already announced plans to bring to market a WP8 device, how much stronger their investment should be.”

The ruling will allow Apple to defend its intellectual property more vigorously, Bloomberg Industries analyst John Butler said in a report.

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