Apple releases figure for Samsung debt, Samsung fights back

Apple has finally released a monetary figure regarding what they firmly believe as Samsung’s debt to them regarding the latter’s alleged infringement of their patents. According to a published article by FOSS patents, Apple is seeking monetary payment from their main smartphone and tablet rival for what they firmly believe were patents that were illegally used by Samsung.

In the court filing that was reported by FOSS, it said that “Samsung once sold a range of phones and a tablet of its own design. Now Samsung’s mobile 13 devices not only look like Apple’s patented software features to interact with the user.”

“Samsung’s infringing sales have enabled Samsung to overtake Apple as the largest manufacturer of smartphones in the world. Samsung has reaped billions of dollars in profits and caused Apple to lose hundred of millions of dollars through its violation of Apple’s intellectual property.

Apple conservatively estimates that as of March 31, 2012, Samsung has been unjustly enriched by about [REDACTED] and has additionally cost Apple about $500 million in lost profits,” they added.

Apple is demanding $24 per device that they think infringed their patents. At the same time, Samsung fights back as they are asking a 2.4% royalty from Apple regarding the latter’s use of Samsung’s standard essential patents.
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Google: Apple should share patents with others

How would the tech world look if Apple allowed other companies to copy their patents freely? Sounds and look interesting right?

Well, search engine mogul Google is trying to convince Apple and other groups to standardize Apple’s patents. This would enable other companies to develop smartphones and tablets based on Apple’s patented technology. It is known that the the Android is iOS’s primary rival both in the smartphone and tablet market.

While Apple may not agree with Google on this, the latter keeps on pushing for the former to make some of their patents available to other tech firms. Google lawyer Kent Walker wrote to the US Senate Judiciary Committee regarding concerns over a number of Apple’s patents.
He said, “While collaborative Standards Setting Organization (SSOs) play an important part in the overall standard setting system, and are particularly prominent in industries such as telecommunications, they are not the only source of standards.”

“Indeed, many have of the same interoperability benefits that the FTC and others have touted in the SSO context also occur when one firm publishes information about an otherwise proprietary standard and other firms then independently decide to make complimentary investments to support that standard in their products,” he added.

Do you think it would be good to the industry if Google convinces Apple?

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HTC buys-out S3

In today’s technology market, it is difficult not to be called an infringer when patents are concerned. Companies have been accusing one another of copyright infringement.

Even Taiwanese tech firm, HTC isn’t absolved from this problem. But just like any other company out there, HTC has learned their lessons well and started to buy other companies for their patents.

Reports have it that HTC has completely purchased S3 Graphics. Analysts have said that this acquisition by HTC will help the company fend off copyright infringement cases and as well as arm themselves to combat Apple.

HTC general counsel Grace Lei said, “We think S3’s patent portfolio is valid and strong and we have decided to complete the purchase of S3 after cautious assessment.”

S3 currently has around 270 patents. Some of these are licensed to other companies like Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft. This purchase allows HTC control of those patents.

Two HTC smartphones were delayed in US Customs, due to patent infringement claims by Apple. The HTC One X and the HTC EVO 4G LTE were stuck in the Customs for months due to the problem. They have since been released.

Will HTC be more active now since they have new bullets to fire back at companies?


Nokia sues HTC, Rim and Viewsonic

Nokia Corp. has filed a suit in US and Germany courts against HTC and RIM saying that the two companies have infringed some of their patents.

The company said that they are trying to avoid litigation but had no choice when the two companies haven’t stopped using their technologies. The case also includes Viewsonic, a visual technology company.

This doesn’t come as a surprise since tech companies have been battling it out in courts to protect what they deem is their technology.

Nokia said that it lodged a complaint in the US International Trade Commission against HTC, and filed suits against HTC and Viewsonic in the Federal District Court in Delaware. The company also filed suits against HTC and Research in Motion in a regional court in Germany and against the three companies in courts in Mannheim and Munich.

The cases include about 45 Nokia patents. This include innovations like power management for mobile devices, dual function antennas, software features like multi-tasking, navigation and mobile email.

Nokia legal spokesperson Mark Durrant said, “These features are not essential to any standards, and therefore these companies are perfectly capable of making devices using their own technologies rather than using Nokia proprietary features covered by the patents in this suit. We are not seeking to exclude them completely from the market. We just want to stop illegal use of Nokia proprietary technologies without authorization.”

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Nokia: Almost all Apple products violate our patent

Nokia is taking its patent dispute with Apple to the next level.

The world’s largest phone maker has expanded its patent claims and now says that besides the iPhone, almost all of Apple’s products are violating Nokia’s patents. The complaint was filed with the U.S. International Trade commission

According to Nokia, the key features found in Apple Inc.’s products including some aspects of its user interface, antenna, cameras and power management technologies are all infringing. The products having these features include the iPhone, iPods and even Apple’s computers.

In October, the Finish phone maker sued Apple over the popular iPhone saying that it has infringed 10 of their patents. The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Wilmington Del.

Apple fought back  and early this month, has filed a countersuit in the Delaware court claiming that Finland-based phone maker has infringed 13 patents. The company also denied Nokia’s charges.

Now, with the suit filed in the U.S. International Trade commission and if Nokia wins, the Finish phone maker could get an order for Customs to stop imports of Apple’s products and parts which are made overseas.

As of this writing, Apple has not made any response or comment to this recent development.


Nokia and Apple: the war begins?

Yup, you read that right. The biggest handset maker in the world and the maker of the most popular handset are heading to what could be a long legal battle.

Nokia is suing Apple because the latter has refused to license 10 patents and according to a statement released by the Finnish phone maker, all iPhone models (yup, that means even the original iPhone) is infringing.

“The basic principle in the mobile industry is that those companies who contribute in technology development to establish standards create intellectual property, which others then need to compensate for,” Ilkka Rahnasto, vice president, legal and intellectual property at Nokia said. “Apple is also expected to follow this principle. By refusing to agree to appropriate terms for Nokia’s intellectual property, Apple is attempting to get a free ride on the back of Nokia’s innovation.”

According to Nokia, the company has spent over $60 billion on R&D related to wireless technology. The patents that Apple allegedly violated include patents on wireless data, speech coding, security and encryption. It also said that for any phone to be able to run on a GSM, 3G, or Wi-Fi network, it would have to license one of its patents – an action that Apple did not make.

So what will happen if Nokia wins in court?

According to Apple analyst Gene Munster, Nokia can extract a royalty payment of 1 to 2 percent for every iPhone EVER sold (basically that $6 to $12 per phone or $204 to $408 for all iPhones). What’s worse for Apple is that if the court found that a “willful infringement” was committed by the company, they will have to pay Nokia three times the amount of whatever the judgment won.

And what does that leave Apple? Either they settle this out of court, or they can invalidate Nokia’s patents. According to Jason Schultz, director of the Samuelson Law, Technology & Public Policy Clinic at the UC Berkeley School of Law however, the latter could be much more difficult to do.

“Invalidating 10 patents is a lot, that’s like running the Boston Marathon. It’s really hard to do. You might get one, two or even five,” Shultz said. “But 10 is a lot.”

Stay tuned!


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