litigation Stories February 18, 2015

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Apple has poached five key engineers from A123 Systems to work in a new battery division at the Cupertino technology company, with some hires possibly going as far back as June, a new report claims. The battery maker claims that these hires violated agreements it had in place to prevent them from joining competing companies.

The employees the report refers to are Don Dafoe, Michael Erickson, Indrajeet Thorat, Mujeeb Ijaz, and Depeng Wang. Three of these workers—Erickson, Thorat, and Wang—were PhD project heads working on new battery technology. Ijaz headed up the System Venture Technologies Division, which oversaw work by all four of the others.

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litigation Stories December 2, 2014

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The ten-year-old lawsuit over whether Apple violated antitrust law by locking the iPod to its own iTunes software has finally gone to trial. In its first day before a jury, the case has yielded several new emails between Apple executives as well as a videotaped deposition of Steve Jobs, which was recorded in 2011 shortly before he died.

In the video, according to Reuters, Jobs was asked if he had heard of Real Networks, the company behind the RealPlayer software Apple had blocked from working with the iPod. Jobs took a quick jab at the music distribution rival and asked, “Do they still exist?”

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litigation Stories November 21, 2014

Following preliminary approval it received in August, Apple has been granted the final court approval it needed in its $450 million ebook settlement, according to a Reuters report.

During a hearing in Manhattan, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote approved what she called an “unusual” accord. It calls for Apple to pay $400 million to as many as 23 million consumers if the company’s appeal of a ruling finding it liable for antitrust violations is unsuccessful.

U.S. District Judge Denise Cote previously expressed concern over the proposed settlement citing a clause in the agreement that she called “most troubling”, but today called the settlement agreement “within the range of those that may be approved as fair and reasonable.” expand full story

litigation Stories October 3, 2014

Ten-year-old Real Networks lawsuit against Apple over iTunes DRM will go to trial

Remember RealPlayer? Well, the company behind that software has been granted a jury trial in an antitrust lawsuit from 2004. At the heart of the suit is an anti-piracy measure added to iTunes and the iPod after Real Networks debuted its RealPlayer competitor. According to the suit, Apple deliberately stopped iTunes and iPods from playing music purchased from the competing store through several iTunes updates.

Real Networks says that this cause $351,631,153 in damages, breaking the claim down even further as “$148,947,126 for resellers, $194,655,141 for direct purchasers, and $8,028,886 for additional iPod sales from the additional transactions.” The full ruling is below.

litigation Stories August 20, 2014

Judge rules that Apple can’t recover $16M legal fees from Samsung in patent lawsuit, releases $2.6M bond

Judge Lucy Koh ruled earlier today that Apple would not be able to recover the roughly $16 million in legal fees incurred while suing Samsung for patent infringement, according to a new report. Apple would have had to prove to the court that the case was exception in order to recover the legal costs, which Koh said it had failed to do.

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While the patent lawsuits between these two companies still manage to make headlines every few weeks, the rivals recently announced a decision to avoid any further patent litigation outside of the United States. Meanwhile, U.S. courts will likely remain a contentious battleground for the two titans.

Judge Koh also ruled today that a $2.6 million bond posted two years ago by Apple in order to block the sale of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 should be released back to Apple. The company had previously elected not to bother enforcing the ban since the tablet is no longer sold anywhere and has been succeeded by two newer models.

 

litigation Stories August 14, 2014

Apple shareholders are the latest to jump into the fray of a lawsuit against Apple over its anti-poaching agreements with a number of other tech companies. As we’ve previously reported, Apple, Google, Intel, Adobe, and a laundry list of other companies allegedly created illegal pacts to avoid hiring each others’ engineers, allowing each employer to keep its wages low without running the risk of a competitor snatching up its competition with a better deal.

Now, a little over a week after a class action settlement was rejected by the court for being too low, Apple shareholder R. Andre Klein has filed a derivitive complaint on behalf of all Apple shareholders (embedded below) accusing the company of “breach of fiduciary duty, gross mismanagement, waste of corporate assets, and breach of the duty of honest services.”

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