Feeds

Apple's iPhone did not rip off Googorola's wireless patent – US appeal judges

Techno-babble-laden design for app updates and messages fails to impress

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

A US appeals court has upheld a decision by the International Trade Commission (ITC) that Apple's iPhone does not infringe a patent owned by Google's Motorola Mobility division.

The protected technology in question was Motorola Mobility's US Patent No. 6,272,333, which describes a "method and apparatus in a wireless communication system for controlling a delivery of data." Drilling into the gobbledegook, it appears to be a system that keeps software installed on devices up to date and thus compatible with the phone network for sending and receiving messages and other information.

Since 2010, Motorola has argued that Apple's iPhone designs infringe upon as many as seven of its patents. Regulators have steadily whittled down that list since then, however, even going as far as to invalidate one of the patents on the grounds that the inventions it described were too obvious.

In the latest US Federal Appeals Court ruling [PDF], issued today, a panel of three circuit judges agreed with the ITC's decision that Motorola hadn't presented enough evidence to support a claim of infringement by Apple.

The decision is the latest victory for Cupertino in its long-running global patent war against Google's Android mobile OS and the handset makers who license it to build smartphones. In November, a jury awarded Apple $929m in damages from Samsung for infringing iPhone-related patents, and Apple has brought a second suit against the South Korean firm that's scheduled to go to trial in March.

Meanwhile, Motorola's attempts to assert its own patents against Apple have borne little fruit. With this latest ruling, all six of Motorola's claims against the fruity firm in the US have been effectively invalidated. What's more, the European Commission ruled last year that Motorola's use of its standards-essential patents in Europe was likely in violation of EU antitrust laws.

Although Motorola's patent offensive against Apple has been underway since at least 2010, Google took on the burden of litigating the cases when it acquired Motorola Mobility for $12.5bn in 2012.

In a statement to Reuters on Friday, Google said, "We're disappointed in this decision and are evaluating our options." Apple, on the other hand, declined to comment. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Hi-torque tank engines: EXTREME car hacking with The Register
Bentley found in a hedge gets WW2 lump insertion
What's MISSING on Amazon Fire Phone... and why it WON'T set the world alight
You fought hard and you saved and earned. But all of it's going to burn...
Trousers down for six of the best affordable Androids
Stylish Googlephones for not-so-deep pockets
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
prev story

Whitepapers

Seattle children’s accelerates Citrix login times by 500% with cross-tier insight
Seattle Children’s is a leading research hospital with a large and growing Citrix XenDesktop deployment. See how they used ExtraHop to accelerate launch times.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.