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ITC was wrong: Apple, RIM owe us $1bn for that patent – Kodak

Bankrupt biz insists mobe makers used its designs

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Bankrupt camera firm Kodak is going to appeal a US regulator's decision that neither Apple nor RIM had infringed on one of its patents.

Kodak is trying to recover what it claims are lost revenues from illegal use of patent '218, a patent used in previewing digital pictures, which the firm says amounts to around $1bn (£643m).

However, the International Trade Commission (ITC) on Friday upheld a preliminary ruling that neither Apple nor Research in Motion had infringed on the patent. Since the regulator agreed with the first judge's decision, it then terminated the investigation.

But Kodak said yesterday that it was planning to appeal the commission's decision with the US Court of Appeals in Washington.

"The validity of the '218 patent has been upheld in previous litigation at the ITC and was affirmed by the US Patent and Trade Office in the face of two separate challenges," the firm said in a canned statement. "We are confident that its validity will ultimately be upheld."

Kodak filed for bankruptcy back in January and sees its patent portfolio as the main way to dig itself out of the red so it can re-build as a printer company, leaving photography behind.

The company is due to auction off a portfolio of more than 1,100 digital imaging patents next month, representing around a tenth of all its intellectual property. Apple had tried to hold up the sale, arguing that some of the patents in the group actually belonged to it, but the bankruptcy court gave Kodak the go-ahead for the sale last month. ®

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