Update: Statement from Bose regarding the complaint below the fold…

Bose has filed a legal complaint against Beats Electronics over the use of noise-cancelling technology used in their headphones, according to CNBC. Apple, of course, announced earlier this year plans to acquire the headphones maker in a $3 billion deal, which it expects to gain regulatory approval for by the end of September.

Re/code reports that Bose has filed a request with the International Trade Commission to ban the sale and import of certain Beats products. The following patents owned by Bose appear to be relevant in the complaint:

  • 8,073,151: “Dynamically configurable ANR filter block topology” by Joho et. al.. Includes 30 claims (2 indep.). Was application 12/430,994. Granted 12/6/2011.
  • 8,073,150: “Dynamically configurable ANR signal processing topology” by Joho et. al.. Includes 24 claims (2 indep.). Was application 12/430,990. Granted 12/6/2011.
  • 6,717,537: “Method and apparatus for minimizing latency in digital signal processing systems” by Fang et. al. Prosecuted by Thelen Reid & Priest LLP Robbins; Steven J.. Includes 19 claims (3 indep.). Was application 10/179,930. Granted 4/6/2004.
  • 8,345,888: “Digital high frequency phase compensation” by Carreras et. al.. Includes 16 claims (3 indep.). Was application 12/750,309. Granted 1/1/2013.
  • 8,054,992: “High frequency compensating” by Sapiejewski.. Includes 23 claims (6 indep.). Was application 11/409,894. Granted 11/8/2011.

(via PriorSmart)

Bose offered the following statement regarding the law suit:

“The filing is comprehensive and explains our position, and as a matter of practice, we don’t comment on on-going litigation.  We can share that for over 30 years, Bose has made significant investments in the research, development, engineering and design of the proprietary technologies found in our headphones.  Bose’s patented technologies enable the exclusive performance found in our QuietComfort® Acoustic Noise Cancelling® headphones.  We are committed to protecting our investment, protecting our customers, and defending the patents we own.”

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26 Responses to “Bose files lawsuit against Beats Electronics over noise-cancelling technology patent”

  1. Reblogged this on Taste of Apple and commented:
    Impeccable timing. Wait until they are bought by a company worth billions and then sue. While they might have a valid claim, the timing is interesting.


  2. Me In LA says:

    Well, I’m suing the F**King internet because it stole all my ideas! Take that!


  3. Billy Devine says:

    Unlike Beats who got their design and research from Monster, Bose actually does have a true research lab and does invent.


  4. Blair Slavin says:

    Gee… they have had the technology for awhile. Only after Apple buys Beats does Bose sew? What a bunch of Slime Balls @bose is turning out to be.


  5. tigerpork says:

    Bose is just mad that Apple didn’t buy them.


  6. acslater017 says:

    Not sure about the validity of the patents, but seems a little dangerous to use one your biggest retail partners.


  7. Peace Epee says:

    Dr. Bose, founder of the Framingham, MA company, was an old, Hindu Indian fellow. His groundbreaking “Acoustic Wave” technology in the mid-’80s changed the face of portable musicality and brought true hi-fi to the huddled masses via 12 enormous “D” batteries.


  8. Peace Epee says:

    I seriously doubt that Dr. Dre is qualified at any sort of engineering, let alone even being able to correctly spell “engineering” although I’m sure he’s adept at rolling “blunts.”


    • so a 6 time Grammy winning producer isn’t a qualified audio engineer in your book? thanks for the irrelevant and discourteous comment you simpleton.


      • Winning a Grammy is about popularity, not about expertise.
        Getting a certificate / degree in an education is a sign of expertise.

        He’s undoubtedly probably a good engineer, or has the right people to do it for him/help him, but that dosen’t mean he can bring that skillset over to Apple.

        I think its about the name – “Dr. Dre” and not any kind of fictive qualifications he brings with him.


  9. Amar G. Bose literally pioneered the field of digital audio signal processing while a faculty member at MIT, and Bose’s noise canceling head phones are second to none. It would be a shame to let Beats or anyone else to just copy it. That all being said, look at the article on Beats’ offices, and show me the engineer who designed Beats noise canceling technology. I would bet that they just purchase their electronics from a Chinese manufacturer who reverse engineered a set from Bose.


    • Oflife says:

      Agreed. Typing this wearing my Limited Edition QC15s that are after continued evaluation of the competition, still the best for noise reduction, sound quality and comfort, which is probably why Bose have yet to release a successor after what must be about 5 years? A friend bought some Bowers & Wilkins headphones which are not too shabby themselves, but when he put my QC15s on, I could tell he had regrets about his purchase.

      Hope Bose win this if everything is as they say it is.


  10. scumbolt2014 says:

    So can I sue everyone that has ears if I patent them?


  11. compumd says:

    It is obvious that Bose must defend their IP and development cost – SAMSUNG must be laughing at the irony.


  12. Its nice that Apple gets a taste of their own medicine :)
    I 100% fully support the patent holders of an invention.
    If you’re going to steal or at the very least continue to market a product that uses others patents (without honouring them) then by all means, sue for what that product/technology is worth.
    Apple should outright cancel the headsets in question. Respect other patents please Apple and don’t be a dick about it.


    • Em …., Apple does not own Beats yet. So, there is nothing they can do about any cancellation (or not) at this point.


      • True, you’re right, although its high time they get a pointers up.
        At least they’re made aware of the situation now.

        The law governs all, no-one is above it. (at least in theory)
        I suspect (and hope) that Apple will do “the right thing” here.
        We’ll have to wait and see :)


    • At first… I was going to comment back but then I realized you likely have limited views and insights as well as an inability to validate your thoughts with actual reason.

      Monster alone put its technology in beats and allowed beats to take its own lead. The Apple purchase will include Monster in getting their shares don’t worry about that. Bose is patent trolling, they have little to no proof, its kind of like sticking your thumb in the air and seeing if the wind is blowing. Bose is hurting, they are over priced and recently began trying a more colorful in ear headset but is failing.

      Im not 100% sure patents should even be lasting as long as they have, some of the patents are so generic and have repeatedly been used by others, Bose is using this time as publicity. Not as a measure of thought or actual reason.


      • “At first… I was going to comment back but then I realized you likely have limited views and insights as well as an inability to validate your thoughts with actual reason.”

        Completely ok by me, then I save time by not responding with my limited insights and inabilities :)


      • calisparkz says:

        Bose isn’t patent trolling!!! They are protecting what is rightfully theirs, and your right about the patent system, I am surprised Apple ever got a patent for a rectangle with rounded corners?
        Stop trolling kid