Articles Posted in Patent

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On Friday, a California company called Innovative Automation LLC filed a lawsuit against Apple Inc. Filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, the complaint alleges that Apple’s iCloud product infringes on a patent owned by Innovative Automation.

The first patent at issue, U.S. Patent No. 7,174,362, is entitled “Method and System for Supplying Products from Pre-Stored Digital Data in Response to Demands Transmitted via Computer Network” and was issued in 2007. Innovative Automation claims that Apple’s iCloud product and service infringes on this patent in the way that it duplicates digital data.

The complaint also alleges that iCloud infringes on a second patent owned by the plaintiff—U.S. Patent No. 7,392,283, entitled “Method and System for Supplying Products from Pre-Stored Digital Data in Response to Demands Transmitted Via Computer Network” and issued in 2008. According to the complaint, Apple’s iCloud product and service infringes on this patent for the same reason as its other patent.

According to a business search through the California Secretary of State, the company Innovative Automation was created in 2011 and is based in San Jose, the heart of Silicon Valley. Its registered agent is Sungil Lee, who is CEO of an education software company called Innovative Knowledge, Inc. Lee is also named as the inventor of both patents at issue in this case.

As the blog Patently Apple points out, “this plaintiff has filed a similar lawsuit against Amazon within the last 24 hours claiming that their Kindle and distribution service “Cloud Player” violates the very same patents used against Apple.”


Tagged: Apple, icloud, patent
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Yesterday, on November 13, 2012, Nevada company 1st Technology LLC filed a lawsuit against Facebook in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, alleging that the social networking company infringed on several patents.

According to the complaint, the managing member of 1st Technology is Dr. Scott Lewis, who invented one of the patents at issue (U.S. Patent No. 5,564,001), which the USPTO issued issued in 1996. The complaint alleges infringement of three patents in total, all owned by 1st Technology:


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Yesterday, on November 12, 2012, Texas company NovelPoint Tracking LLC filed a lawsuit against Apple Inc. for patent infringement. Brought in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, the suit alleges that certain Apple products, and specifically the iPhone 4S, infringe on a patent owned by the plaintiff.

That patent, U.S. Patent No. 6,442,485, is entitled “Method and Apparatus for an Automatic Vehicle Location, Collision Notification, and Synthetic Voice,” and was registered with the USPTO on August 27, 2002. NovelPoint Tracking asserts that it is the exclusive owner of all rights, title, and interest in the patent, which was originally invented by Wayne W. Evans. The patent essentially describes using a method of using a GPS module to determine a vehicle or product’s location.

Relatedly, NovelPoint Tracking recently brought a lawsuit against Ford, alleging that its SYNC project infringes on two of its patents—6,442,485 (the patent at issue in the case against Apple) and 6,266,617.


Tagged: Apple, gps, patent
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Apple must pay more than $368 million in damages to VirnetX Inc. according to a jury verdict returned in federal court yesterday (see it below). The same day the verdict was reached, VirnetX and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) filed a new patent lawsuit against Apple.

In 2010, VirnetX said that its patent portfolio was “derived from a Central Intelligence Agency security project”

The four (4) patents in this litigation reportedly stem from technology for secure communications developed for the CIA by SAIC.


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A federal court dismissed Apple’s fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory (FRAND) patent licensing claims against Motorola Mobility, Inc. this morning.

The case was dismissed ‘with prejudice,’ legalese that means Apple’s claims that the court threw out cannot be raised a second time in a different lawsuit.

A once sentence transcript of minutes from this morning’s 2 hour and 37 minute court hearing is succinct and to the point (read it below):


The exact reasons behind the court’s decision to dismiss this case will hopefully become clear after the court adds a detailed written opinion to the case docket detailing its legal reasoning behind.

Last week this blogger noted that FRAND disputes were being pursued in parallel litigation tracks in the U.S. and abroad.

On October 31, 2012, Apple declared told the court and Motorola Mobility that its competitor’s essential wireless patents in dispute are worth, at most, just one dollar per iPhone.

There were at least six lawyers at this morning’s hearing before U.S. District Judge Barbara B. Crabb in the Western District of Wisconsin — three for Apple and three for Motorola Mobility.


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A snippy apology is apparently not what the judges involved in Apple’s U.K. patent litigation over Samsung tablets ordered, according to testy statements made at a U.K. Court of Appeal hearing today.

Judge Robin Jacob court told Apple and Samsung lawyers this morning that the iPad maker had 24 hours to revise its currently published statement about the verdict in favor of Samsung on Apple’s UK website, replace it with a new one apologizing for inaccuracies, put the link on its home page, and use at least an 11-point font.

The website notice that Apple published last Friday highlighted a lower court judge’s statement that the Samsung tablets involved in the lawsuit “are not as cool” as Apple’s iPad.  Apple also piled on a host of earlier judicial platitudes emphasizing that the iPad has “extreme simplicity . . . is striking . . . . It is a cool design.”

The original July 18, 2012 order by Judge Colin Birss of the Patent Court, granted Samsung’s request to require Apple to publish a simple, one-paragraph statement on its website, and in a number of print publications:

“On 9th July 2012 the High Court of Justice of England and Wales ruled that Samsung Electronics (UK) Limited’s Galaxy Tablet computers, namely the Galaxy Tab 10.1, Tab 8.9 and Tab 7.7 do not infringe Apple’s registered design 000181607-0001. A copy of the full judgment of the High Court is available via the following link [insert hyperlink].”

Judge Birss ordered Apple to publish the notice only in the U.K., denying Samsung’s request that Apple publish it on each of the company’s country-specific European websites. He also rejected Samsung’s request that the notice be on Apple’s UK website for a year, concluding that six months was more appropriate. The judge’s rationale was that “this a very fast moving industry and I bear in mind the risk of prejudice to Apple” of a more extended publication requirement.


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On Monday, Apple filed an Ex parte application for discovery against Motorola Mobility (‘Motorola’) to defend against the Google subsidiary’s patent claims in Germany. Motorola’s claims allege that Apple’s iPhone and iPad wireless devices infringe two of the company’s European patents.

One central Apple legal defense to Motorola’s European patent claims is that the telecommunications hardware maker would not offer it fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory (‘FRAND’) licensing terms over the wireless patents in dispute, “in violation of German and European antitrust laws.”

FRAND contract disputes also remain an issue in the companies’ U.S. patent lawsuits. In Wisconsin, for example, Apple declared today that Motorola’s essential wireless patents are worth, at most, only one dollar per iPhone.

Motorola’s European patents at issue involve:

  • EP 1 010 336 (the ‘336 patent) — Method for Performing a Countdown Function During a Mobile-Originated Transfer for a Packet Radio System
  • EP 1 053 613 (the ‘613 patent) — Method and System for Generating a Complex Pseudonoise Sequence for Processing a Code Division Multiple Access Signal

The relief sought by Apple under 28 U.S. § 1782 is commonly used when parties litigating abroad can assist foreign courts with relevant information in dispute, the request is reasonable and narrowly tailored, no foreign prohibition exists against the request, and no foreign prohibition exists against the request.


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Last Friday, Intercarrier Communications LLC (“ICC”), a Texas limited liability company, filed lawsuits against at least thirteen different technology companies, including Apple Inc. Other defendants include the makers of such popular apps as TextNow and PingChat! (by Enflick), Viber, WhatsApp, and Glympse. The lawsuits were filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, which seems on its face unusual for a Texas company.

In its suit against Apple, ICC alleges that Apple Messages and FaceTime products for iOS and OS X infringe on a patent it owns, U.S. Patent No. 6,985,748. According to its description, that patent is entitled “Inter-carrier Messaging Service Providing Phone Number Only Experience” and was invented by Chris Knotts. All of Knotts’s registered patents are related to inter-carrier messaging. According to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, ICC registered with the Secretary of State on April 23, 2012.

Complaint in Intercarrier Communications LLC v. Apple Inc.


Posted in: Laws, Patent
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Yesterday, WhitServe LLC filed a lawsuit against Apple alleging infringement of a patent WhitServe owns. Filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut, the lawsuit

The patent, U.S. Patent No. 7,921,139, is described as a “System for sequentially opening and displaying files in a directory.” Invented by Wesley W. Whitmyer, Jr.—sole member of WhitServe LLC according to a business search for the Connecticut company—the patent was filed December 1, 2006.

The allegedly infringing Apple products include Mac OS X Leopard, Mac OS X Lion, and Mac OS X Mountain Lion. According to the complaint, Apple introduced the “Quick Look” feature into its operating system with the release of Mac OS X Leopard on October 26, 2007—nearly one year after the patent at issue was filed. The complaint describes the Quick Look feature as allowing a user to “instantly preview almost any file, and even play media files, without opening an application.”

After detailing 37 ways in which Quick Look infringes on the plaintiff’s patent, the complaint asks for injunctive relief as well as damages for harm suffered.

Unlike many patent lawsuits against the technology giants like Apple, this suit stands out as being by the actual inventor of the patent at issue, rather than merely a patent holding company. Whether the merits of the suit will pan out for the plaintiff remains to be seen.


Tagged: Apple, lawsuit, os x, patent
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According to a new infringement lawsuit filed Tuesday in federal court (read it below), the Google Wallet app violates a Canadian resident’s U.S. patent.

Plaintiff Peter Sprogis holds U.S. Patent No. 7,298,271 for a “Method and apparatus for providing awards using transponders.” The ‘271 patent abstract describes a customer loyalty program using ‘electronic data storage elements’ (EDSE) like RFID tages can be used to encourage customer loyalty by offering coupons or loyalty points for visiting a business.

Sprogis accuses Google of infringing at least nine claims listed in his patent.

The plaintiff’s claims appear to paint a wide swath over Google’s app. Google Wallet enables Android phone users to securely store credit and debit card information on their mobile devices to shop locally as well as online.


Tagged: Google, mobile, patent