Microsoft Corp did not violate a patent owned by Google subsidiary Motorola Mobility when it made its popular Xbox, an administrative law judge at the International Trade Commission said in a preliminary decision issued on Friday.
A final ITC decision in the case is due in July.
The fight over the Xbox video game console is related to the larger smartphone patent war between Apple, Microsoft and the mobile phone makers who use Google's Android software, including its subsidiary Motorola Mobility.
Motorola Mobility accused Microsoft of infringing five patents when it filed its complaint in 2010. Four have been dropped.
One patent remains, according to the ITC docket for the case. That patent allows devices to communicate wirelessly over short distances.