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Apple loses iPhone patent lawsuit

Jury rejects Apple's claim that Sony, Nokia patents were 'obvious'

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A jury in the US District Court in Delaware has ruled that Apple infringed on three patents owned by MobileMedia Ideas LLC of Chevy Chase, MD.

"We're very pleased," MobileMedia CEO Larry Horn told Bloomberg. "We think it's justified."

MobileMedia Ideas, reports the Los Angeles Times, is a patent holding company formed by Sony, Nokia, and MPEG-LA – a bit of information not disclosed on its website.

After a week-long trial, the jury took just under four hours to rule on Thursday that the patents are not invalid, as Apple had asserted, "due to obviousness", and that Apple is guilty of infringing on all three in its use of the technology in its iPhones.

The US patents in question are 6,070,068, originally granted to Sony, and 6,253,075 and 6,427,078, granted to Nokia. They're described on the MobileMedia Ideas website as being for "incoming/current call processing", "incoming call rejection", and "image capture/transfer", respectively.

In its original complaint, filed on March 31, 2010, MobileMedia Ideas had alleged that Apple had infringed on 14 of the patents it controls, but that number was reduced to these three before the trial began.

In that complaint, MobileMedia Ideas said that "MMI has suffered and will continue to suffer damages and irreparable injury" due to Apple's "willful and ... deliberate disregard of MMI's rights under the patent[s]."

Exactly how much those damages and irreparable injury will cost Apple isn't yet known. Judge Sue Robinson has yet to schedule a date for a trial to determine the amount Apple will have to cough up.

For his part, Horn told Bloomberg that he believes that amount should be "substantial." ®

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