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iPhone targeted in patent infringement case

updated 05:20 pm EST, Mon November 24, 2008

iPhone patent infringement

Apple is involved in yet another patent infringement lawsuit targeted at the iPhone. The plaintiff, EMG Technology, accuses the the company of violating a patent that relates to Internet navigation and Internet Protocol Television (IPTV). The claim involves the presentation of content changed from HTML to XML format, a technology utilized by the iPhone. The patent also allegedly covers technology for manipulating regions of a screen, including zoom and scroll functions that the iPhone uses.

EMG has chosen the lawfirm Jeffer, Mangels, Butler and Marmaro (JMBM) to handle the legal action, including the initial filing in the District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division. The particular Texas court has become known for patent cases, with many plaintiffs expecting a favorable outcome from the local juries. The Tyler Division has seen 14 filings in November, with several hundred so far in 2008.

JMBM is not a stranger in the world of patent infringement suits. Stanley Gibson, an IP expert and attorney for the company, successfully lead a case against Medtronic that resulted in a $570 million verdict for his clients. The doctor behind the patent, Gary Michelson M.D., received a $1.35 billion payment for the intellectual property dispute and acquisition.

Apple has been involved in similar suits, including one filed by Minerva in January that claimed infringement of a patent that described a "mobile entertainment and communication device in a palm-held size housing." A Florida company in 2007 claimed that the iPhone used its patented touch-screen technology, in another case that was presented in the Tyler court.

The current case with EMG Technology is in the very beginning stages of legal action. Although the law firm has submitted the first paperwork, it is still unknown how far the proceedings will actually go, as many patent suits are dismissed before presentation to a jury.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. Bobfozz

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    The Smell of Apple Money

    Vultures. Hopefully Apple will have all its ducks lined up and squash these things. Today it would be tough to invent a circle without 35 lawyers indicating they thought of it first.

  1. rtbarry

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +5

    shocker...

    ...apple does the work and yet another leech wants a piece.

    in advance, "shutup, testudo".

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    You know....

    Many of us know the patent system needs serious revision. One place they could start is that anyone claiming rights actually HAS TO MAKE SOMETHING. If you do not have a product or software that is ready to go to market you can not claim patent infringement. It's one thing to deconstruct an idea that someone is selling today and its a whole other to say you "thought" of it first even though someone else thought of the very same thing and ACTUALLY MADE IT INTO A PRODUCT. Especially on something as vauge as a process.

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -2

    You know....

    Many of us know the patent system needs serious revision. One place they could start is that anyone claiming rights actually HAS TO MAKE SOMETHING. If you do not have a product or software that is ready to go to market you can not claim patent infringement. It's one thing to deconstruct an idea that someone is selling today and its a whole other to say you "thought" of it first even though someone else thought of the very same thing and ACTUALLY MADE IT INTO A PRODUCT. Especially on something as vauge as a process.

  1. Marook

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +5

    From HTML to XML...

    Wow, that means they have just about the whole internet under patent here??

    Almost every modern internet application that 'presents' something, loads html and then som xml.. gee, even the newest HTML formats ARE XML.. what do they think they can patent here?? It's open standards all over.. !?!

  1. TomSawyer

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +2

    What we need here

    ...is a counter for the total number of patent infringement lawsuits against Apple. That would save a ton of page space as these things are popping up seemingly daily. Any successful product or company draws these things like bears to honey.

    They're all the same anyway. Just another company that says "we thought of it first" and never actually produced anything. Or a lawyer convincing the company (s)he has found some obtuse way of twisting a lawsuit out of what Apple is actually DOING from something usually only remotely related, hoping they can pull the technical wool over the judge or jury's eyes.

    The lawyers are the only ones (I don't use the word people here because that would imply human and not blood-sucking leach) who profit from these exercises. They get their money win, lose, or draw so they can only benefit from initiating litigation.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    Re: You know

    Many of us know the patent system needs serious revision. One place they could start is that anyone claiming rights actually HAS TO MAKE SOMETHING.

    No, that's just plain stupid. Because all any company has to do to the small-time business/developer is steal their ideas, put the manpower behind it to get it done first, and then claim "You don't have a shipping product, thus your patent is worthless!" (Man, does that sound like a company you hate or what?)

    And even if they did have a product, you all would claim it doesn't count, because Apple's is better, or it was logical or obvious and shouldn't be a patent. Or that the product has no market share, so its failure disputes the patent.

    What all you want in patent law is "If Apple has a product, its their patent."

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