infringement Stories April 11, 2013

Judge says Apple and Google are using litigation as a business strategy, have ‘no interest’ in settlement

In an ongoing case in which Apple and Google’s Motorola have accused each other of infringing various mobile related patents since 2010, U.S. District Judge Robert Scola said in an order yesterday that the two companies have no interest in reaching a settlement. Bloomberg reports Scola said in his order that both companies are using the litigation as a “business strategy that appears to have no end”:

“The parties have no interest in efficiently and expeditiously resolving this dispute; they instead are using this and similar litigation worldwide as a business strategy that appears to have no end,” U.S. District Judge Robert Scola in Miami said in an order dated yesterday. “That is not a proper use of this court.”

“Without a hint of irony, the parties now ask the court to mop up a mess they made by holding a hearing to reduce the size and complexity of the case,” he wrote. “The court declines this invitation.”

The result is Apple and Google will now have a four month period to narrow their claims related to the case that now includes over 180 claims for 12 patents. Bloomberg notes that Scola said the case currently includes “disputes over the meaning of more than 100 terms,” and that the case would be put on hold until the disputes are resolved if the two companies are unable to come up with a solution before the four month timeframe expires.

Back in November there were reports that Apple and Google’s Motorola were considering a settlement and even submitted “proposals on using binding arbitration to reach a licensing agreement” for standard essential patents to courts in Wisconsin. At the time Apple said “such an agreement could lead to a global settlement of all of their patent disputes,” but the two companies couldn’t come to an agreement on the arbitration process.

Last year Apple and HTC announced they reached a global settlement in multiple patent-related cases that some analysts estimated could be worth as much as $180 million to $280 million annually. When it comes to Samsung, many reports quoted Samsung’s Shin Jong-kyun as claiming the company does not “intend to (negotiate) at all” following the HTC settlement.

infringement Stories March 20, 2013

Sony and Philips-backed Intertrust sues Apple over security and trusted computing patents

Apple is the target of a new patent infringement suit filed today by Intertrust—a company backed by Sony and Philips that has licensed its patents to many companies in the past including Samsung, Nokia, Microsoft, HTC, Motorola, and others. The Wall Street Journal noted Philips and Sony each hold a 49.5-percent stake in the company that previously settled with Microsoft in 2004 for $440 million related to a patent infringement case.

The announcement from Intertrust on its website doesn’t mention the specific patents or technologies involved in the suit, but it claims Apple products, including iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Macs, iCloud and iTunes, infringe on 15 Intertrust patents related to “security and distributed trusted computing.”

 The lawsuit accuses Apple of making products and services that infringe on 15 Intertrust patents on security and distributed trusted computing. The lawsuit covers a broad range of key Apple products and services including iOS devices such as the iPhone and iPad, Mac computers and laptops, Apple TV, and services including iTunes, iCloud, and the Apple App Store.

“Apple makes many great products that use Intertrust’s inventions,” said Talal Shamoon, Intertrust’s chief executive officer. “Our patents are foundational to modern Internet security and trusted computing, and result from years of internal research and development. We are proud of our record of peaceful and constructive licensing with industry leaders. We find it regrettable that we are forced to seek Court assistance to resolve this matter.”

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