Microsoft and Dell have entered into a patent licensing agreement that will have Dell paying royalties to Microsoft for its sale of devices running Android and Chrome OS. Dell will also be licensing patents to Microsoft that are related to Xbox consoles, presumably lowering its royalty payments based on Microsoft's console sales.

Profiting off of Google's software

Microsoft has been increasingly forging agreements like these over the past few years: its patents offer other manufacturers protection from litigation related to Android and Chrome OS, while simultaneously increasing the price of those operating systems and bringing in money for Microsoft.

Back in 2012, Microsoft boasted that 70 percent of Android phones sold in the US were covered by one of its licensing agreements, including those by Samsung and HTC. Licensing agreements for Chrome OS devices have been occurring for a few years now too — and if its popularity continues to increase, there's a good chance there'll be even more of them.