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Apple, Spotify, Amazon: All your Cloud are belong to us, says firm

Lawyers don ten-gallon hats, jingling spurs

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

A San Jose company has claimed that it owns the technology used by Apple in its iCloud, by Spotify in its streaming service and by Amazon in its Cloud Player. It has filed three separate IP lawsuits against the firms for making digital data available to people over a computer network.

Innovative Automation LLC, whose business agent is also the listed inventor on the patents, tech law blog Justia points out, has launched cases against Apple's iCloud and Spotify. The suits cite infringement of two patents, both titled “Method and System for Supplying Products from Pre-Stored Digital Data in Response to Demands Transmitted via Computer Network”. The first patent was granted in 2007 (7,174,362), the second in 2008 (7,392,283).

Innovative Automation filed the cases in the Eastern District of Texas and is suing for damages, reasonable royalties and costs. The firm has asked for a jury trial.

The two patents in question describe a digital data duplication system that "utilizes one or more computer networks to automate the process from order-taking to delivery".

The verdict will depend on how broadly the idea of digital data and products are interpreted.

Both cases are pending replies from the defendants. A winning verdict could open the floodgates against a host of other companies and services that rely on the cloud. ®

Innovative Automation LLC has filed three cases in the United States District Court for Eastern Texas Tyler Division - a claim against Spotify: 6:12-cv-00883, one against Apple: 6:2012cv00882 and another against Amazon: 6:12-cv-00881.

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