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Chinese gadget maker sues HP and Toshiba

In a flap over over USB patents

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Beijing-based gadget maker Aigo is suing HP and Toshiba for patents relating to USB ports.

Aigo has filed against HP in a Beijing court and against Toshiba in Xi'an. It has also written to Dell, Samsung and Sony, Global Times reports.

The company, which sponsors the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes F1 team, is seeking one million Yuan ($146,000) compensation.

The case centres on six patents registered in China but valid worldwide.

None of the companies named would comment on the report.

Aigo makes USB Flash drives, camcorders, projectors, iPhone accessories and digital photo frames.

An HP spokeswoman said HP refutes the alleged infringement.

China has long been regarded as the bad guy over how it conforms to intellectual property laws. But it emerged this week that some "made in China" brands are now being faked elsewhere as Chinese wages and costs rise. The problem is made worse because many Chinese firms do not bother to protect their own intellectual property. ®

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