updated 11:50 pm EST, Sat February 3, 2007
Nike+iPod Kit lawsuit
Apple and Nike have been sued by a Colorado company accusing them of infringing a patent covering shoes that collect data on the wearer's activity in their Nike+iPod Sport Kit. File on Thursday by PhatRat Technology, the complaint was delivered to a Denver federal court, alleging that Apple and Nike are using its patented innovations without permission. PhatRat, which develops wireless devices that gauge a wearer's performance, asked for cash compensation and a court order blocking the use, Bloomberg reports. "PhatRat has been damaged by the infringing acts of Apple and Nike, and will continue to be damaged unless" they are stopped by the court, closely held PhatRat said. The $30 Nike+iPod Sport Kit, which debuted last July, features a sensor and receiver let the shoes communicate with an iPod over a radio frequency so runners can be apprised in realtime of their speed and pace. It is designed to work with special Nike shoes, but third-parties have developed adapters for most running shoes.
The report notes that PhatRat makes products such as the airRat, a device for measuring sports performance while snowboarding, skiing or riding a BMX bicycle, the company said on its Web site. The patent at issue is entitled "shoes employing monitoring devices, and associated methods."
"Nike is aware of the complaint and is reviewing the allegations alongside our own intellectual property rights," a spokesman for Beaverton, Oregon-based Nike t old Bloomberg.
PhatRat also sued Apple in the same court in October, claiming the computer company infringed four patents in their Nike+iPod Sports Kit and iPod products.