The International Trade Commission on Tuesday ruled in favor of Motorola Mobility in its patent infringement claim against Apple. The Cupertino-based company’s iPhone and iPad were found to be in violation of Motorola’s Wi-Fi technology patent, however they did not infringe on three other patents that Motorola asserted against the iPhone-maker. “We are pleased that the ALJ’s initial determination finds Apple to be in violation of Motorola Mobility’s intellectual property, and look forward to the full commission’s ruling in August,” Motorola told CNET in a statement. The ruling is preliminary and still must be approved by the ITC’s six-member commission. More →
Barnes & Noble on Monday received some potentially good news following the rejection of its antitrust suit against Microsoft earlier this month. Microsoft is looking to halt the import of the bookseller’s Nook slates, claiming the devices infringe three Microsoft patents. Barnes & Noble argued that the patents in question are invalid because they do not cover new inventions, and the company has a new ally. Jeff Hsu, a staff attorney at the U.S. International Trade Commission, told Bloomberg he recommended that ITC Judge Theodore Essex rule that there is no violation by Barnes & Noble. Microsoft said the recommendation was made before evidence was presented, and it believes Hsu’s opinion may change once the trial gets underway. Bloomberg notes, however, that the ITC staff acts as a third party in the case and there’s no requirement that the judge follow any recommendations. Microsoft claims the Android operating system found on Barnes & Noble’s Nook eReader utilizes its protected technology, and the software giant has signed agreements with roughly 70% of Android vendors in the United States to license the technology in question. Judge Essex is expected to release his findings on April 27th.
Barnes & Noble and Microsoft are currently tied up in two separate legal battles, one being heard by the Department of Justice and the other by the International Trade Commission. In March 2011, like previous Android vendors, Microsoft accused Barnes & Noble’s NOOK and NOOK Color of infringing on the company’s patents. The software giant, which takes in roughly $450 million a year through Android royalties, was looking to license the infringed patents to the bookseller, but the company fired back with claims that Microsoft was creating an abusive monopoly. It is now being suggested by patent expert Florian Muller of FOSS Patents that the ITC is likely to reject Barnes & Noble’s antitrust complaint against Microsoft, however. The complete order is not publicly available, but an administrative law judge has reportedly dismissed Barnes & Noble’s patent misuse defense against Microsoft . The judge issued a detailed order that has not yet been made public, but the headline reads, “Initial Determination Granting Microsoft’s Motion for Summary Determination of Respondents’ First Affirmative Defense of Patent Misuse.” The ITC evidentiary hearing will begin on Monday, February 6th. More →
The United States International Trade Commission ruled late Tuesday that Motorola Mobility is guilty of infringing on one of Microsoft’s patents. The patent is related to calendar sync and how one might use a device to schedule a meeting, BBC News explained. Microsoft originally filed a suit against Motorola Mobility in August in an attempt to block sales of several Motorola Android smartphones, such as DROID 2, DROID X and several others, and accused Motorola Mobility of infringing on seven total patents. The ITC judge ruled that Motorola Mobility devices do not infringe on six of Microsoft’s patents, however. Microsoft recently filed a similar lawsuit against Barnes & Noble, and the company has already reached licensing agreements with HTC, Samsung, ViewSonic and several other firms. “The ones who can actually sit back and relax as they watch this are those who have concluded license deals with Microsoft (or other patent holders) and don’t have to worry about possible or actual import bans, possible or impossible workarounds, or further escalation,” patent expert Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents explained recently. More →
A judge with the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) ruled Monday that HTC is guilty of infringing Apple’s patents in several devices. The ITC also ordered a ban on the import of several of HTC’s smartphones although it is unclear which models are affected. The ban will take effect on April 19th. “Notice is hereby given that the U.S. International Trade Commission has found a violation of section 337 in this investigation and has issued a limited exclusion order prohibiting importation of infringing personal data and mobile communications devices and related software,” the ITC said in its determination. “The Commission has determined that exclusion of articles subject to this order shall commence on April 19, 2012.” Raed on for more.
A judge with the United States International Trade Commission has ruled that Apple is not infringing on four of HTC’s patents related to phone dialing and battery power management, Reuters said Monday. HTC originally filed the lawsuit in May of last year when it sought a ban on the import of Apple’s iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The final ruling in the case will occur in February when the verdict of a full commission is revealed. Apple and HTC have been locked in a number of legal battles. Apple first sued HTC in March and a U.S. ITC judge found HTC guilty of infringing on two of Apple’s patents in July. HTC has said it will appeal that ruling. More →
The United States International Trade Commission will re-investigate claims that HTC is infringing on Apple’s patents. In July, a judge ruled HTC was guilty of infringing on two of Apple’s patents that covered “a system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data,” and “a real-time signal processing system for serially transmitted data.” HTC quickly said it would appeal the decision, noting it has a strong case against Apple. HTC fired back and sued the iPhone maker for patent infringement in August when it accused Apple of infringing on three of its patents. HTC said it was disappointed in “Apple’s constant attempts at litigation instead of competing fairly in the market,” and even said it was willing to bury the hatchet in the ongoing patent battles. Apple and HTC must send in written submissions and “proposed remedial orders” related to the case by October 6th. The U.S. ITC will complete its investigation by December 6th, Bloomberg said. More →
United States International Trade Commission judge James Gildea has ruled that Apple’s Mac OS X operating system infringes on two patents owned by S3. Judge Gildea also ruled that the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch do not infringe on S3’s patents, however. The patents in question are related to NVIDIA graphics chips used in Apple’s Mac computers, but it is unclear which devices exactly are infringing on S3’s technology. HTC purchased S3 for $300 million in early July, and a different ITC judge recently ruled that the Taiwanese company is guilty of infringing on two patents owned by Apple related to a “system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data,” and a “real-time signal processing system for serially transmitted data.” HTC’s chief financial officer Winston Yung said on Tuesday that his company was willing to bury the hatchet with Apple and that the two companies have to “sit down and figure it out.” More →
Speaking with Bloomberg recently, HTC’s chief financial officer Winston Yung said that his company is open to cutting a deal with Apple over various patents the two companies are currently fighting over. “We have to sit down and figure it out,” Yung said. “We are open to all sorts of solutions, as long as the solution and the terms are fair and reasonable. On and off we’ve had discussions with Apple, even before the initial determination came out.” Earlier this month, an International Trade Commission judge ruled that HTC was infringing on two of Apple’s patents related to a “system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data,” and a “real-time signal processing system for serially transmitted data.” HTC said it would appeal the ruling, however, and Apple was also recently found guilty of infringing on patents owned by S3 Graphics, which HTC purchased in early July. More →
The U.S. International Trade Commission said on Tuesday its May ruling that Kodak did not infringe on Apple’s patents will stand. The two companies have been locked up in two separate legal battles for the better part of this year. Here’s how it started: Kodak first filed lawsuits against Apple and Research In Motion and accused both firms of infringing on its camera patents. That case was called “In the Matter of Certain Mobile Telephones and Wireless Communication Devices Featuring Digital Cameras, and Components Thereof.” A judge has already ruled in favor of RIM and Apple in that lawsuit, and it could end up costing the camera maker millions of dollars. Shortly after that case was filed, however, Apple responded with own suit against Kodak titled: “In the Matter of Digital Imaging Devices and Related Software.” That’s the suit that Kodak won in May and the one ITC ruled today will stand. “We are pleased that the commission has confirmed the ALJ’s finding that there is no violation by Kodak,” David Lanzillo, a Kodak spokesman, told Bloomberg. More →
HTC will appeal the U.S. International Trade Commission’s ruling that it is infringing on two of Apple’s patents. “Now the course of action is to appeal, we believe we have a very strong case, the attorney agrees with us, and therefore we will appeal,” HTC’s chief financial officer Winston Yung told The Wall Street Journal on Monday. On Friday, a U.S. ITC judge said that HTC was guilty of infringing on two of Apple’s patents that cover a “system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data,” and a “real-time signal processing system for serially transmitted data.” Apple originally filed the complaint last year, and HTC has filed its own lawsuit against Apple in which it argues that Apple is infringing on patents owned by its subsidiary S3 Graphics. Yung also said that HTC is open to discussing the lawsuit with Apple. “If the parties want to talk, we can talk anytime…I think in cases like this, you should keep in touch,” he said.
Shares of HTC’s stock closed down 3.9% at T$871 on Monday, just three days after the the U.S. International Trade Commission announced that the Taiwanese company was guilty of infringing on two of Apple’s patents. The patents were related to a “system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data,” and a “real-time signal processing system for serially transmitted data,” but the judge’s ruling is still awaiting the review of a 6-member Commission. “We are highly confident we have a strong case for the ITC appeals process and are fully prepared to defend ourselves using all means possible,” HTC’s general council Grace Lei said on Friday “We strongly believe we have alternate solutions in place for the issues raised by Apple. We look forward to resolving this case, so we can continue creating the most innovative mobile experiences for consumers.” HTC also has an ongoing patent lawsuit against Apple. The Financial Times attributed the sell-off to “investor fears that the legal battle could have wider implications for the competitive balance between Apple and Google Android-based phonemakers like HTC, Samsung, and Motorola.” More →
Last week Samsung filed an official complaint with the International Trade Commission (ITC) asking the government body to block the import of Apple’s iPod, iPhone, and iPad. Apple flipped the tables on Samsung and has filed its own complaint with the ITC asking that it block the import of Samsung’s tablets and smartphones, Bloomberg said. The move follows Apple’s request to a U.S District Court in San Jose to block the import of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1, Infuse 4G, DROID Charge and Nexus S 4G. The legal battle has been ongoing since Apple filed a lawsuit against Samsung in April and accused the Korean phone maker of creating copycat devices that infringed on its intellectual property. Samsung bit back later in April and said that it will do everything it can to protect its own intellectual property. Meanwhile, U.S. courts have granted Apple access to Samsung’s most recent products, but have denied Samsung the same access to the Apple iPhone 5 and iPad 3. The legal battle could place strain on Samsung’s component business, which is expected to struggle during the second half of this year — Apple is the largest buyer of Samsung’s LCD products. More →