Back in October, Rockstar Consortium launched a fierce patent lawsuit against Google and Android. Then in December, Google decided to fight back and stated Rockstar’s own CEO said that every tech company is infringing on their patents. Google, rightfully so, was sticking up for their Android OEMs. But now Rockstar has made one of them give in. Rather than going through a legal battle with a group that has much more power, Huawei has decided to pay off Rockstar.
Had Huawei stood up to Rockstar, they would have faced a group led by Apple, Microsoft, BlackBerry, Sony, and Ericsson. Since Huawei filed a joint motion with Rockstar, the group will now likely push harder against the remaining OEMs they previously sued — Samsung, LG, HTC, ASUS, Pantech, and ZTE. If history means anything, we know one of them will put up a good fight.
Source: FOSS Patents
Just like that, out of nowhere, Google was found guilty of five claims of U.S. Patent No 7,025,914 involving push notification services. The patent in question is owned by SimpleAir, an inventor-owned technology licensing company that holds eight issued U.S. patents. The Google services involved are Google Cloud Messaging (GCM) and Android Cloud to Device Messaging (C2DM). These services are used to send instant notifications for Android apps such as Gmail, Facebook, and Twitter.
The verdict took place this past Saturday, January 18th after a week-long trial in Marshall, Texas, and was presided over by the Honorable Rodney Gilstrap. Although the jury found Google guilty on all five claims, they weren’t able to reach a unanimous decision on the amount of damages. It will now be decided by a new separate jury that will hear a limited second trial. SimpleAir is seeking over $125 million in damages.
With a new patent trial scheduled to start on March 31, 2014 between Apple and Samsung, Judge Lucy Koh has entered a summary judgment order on some motions from the two parties. Judge Koh denied some requests from Apple, but did rule that Samsung infringed an Apple patent on “word recommendations” aka autocomplete. At this point, Samsung will now have to argue at trial that the patent itself should be ruled invalid. Considering the ubiquity of autocomplete on any smartphone, this ruling could be a problem for manufacturers of other Android devices. Reportedly, Google is involved with an anonymous reexamination request of the patent. As the parties prepare for trial, Apple still has five patents at issue with one of them ruled as being infringed upon by Samsung even before the jury starts to hear the case. Read more
Privacy is a bigger issue than it’s ever been before— and there are certainly some rules that needed to be checked up on, especially within government. There is currently a pending Supreme Court ruling on whether police need warrants to search cell phones. This is a pretty important ruling, as it will decide a lot in terms of precedents for the future of the privacy rights of Americans.
There isn’t any schedule for the hearings yet, so we’ll keep you updated as the case unfolds.
HTC finally caught a break! One of Nokia’s patent lawsuits against HTC in Germany has been dismissed. Wondering what the lawsuit was about? Apparently Nokia owns a patent on receiving phone calls on a device while it’s updating. We’ll argue about how silly that patent is later.
HTC was clearly thrilled about the news, and they believe that it may eventually lead to Nokia’s patent being invalidated. Nokia, on the other hand, may try to appeal the case, but I can’t imagine they’d have much more luck a second time around.
We finally have some good patent lawsuit news. Hopefully we’ll see more of that in 2014.
source: FOSS Patents
via: Android Authority
As 2013 draws to a close, what better way to remind us that life marches on despite the numbers on the calendar than a new development in the never-ending story of Apple versus Samsung. Apple has yet again filed a request in Federal District Court with Judge Lucy Koh asking for a sales injunction on more than 20 smartphone and tablet devices produced by Samsung. More accurately, they were produced by Samsung a few short years ago, but currently none of the products are on the market. Read more
Last month we told you about Rockstar, which is a company formed by Apple, Microsoft, RIM, Sony, and Ericsson. They are using the patents won from the Nortel bid to attack Android manufacturers. Rockstar is essentially a patent troll with its only function being litigation. They filed a suit against Google and other Android manufacturers last month, but Google is fighting back in an attempt to not only protect themselves, but all of Android and the manufacturers.
Google’s complaint, filed this past Monday, claims that Rockstar’s patent campaign is attacking hundreds of tech companies and it has “placed a cloud on Google’s Android platform,” especially Nexus devices. Google also stated that Rockstar’s CEO said that Facebook, LinkedIn and every other tech company is infringing on these old Nortel patents.
Remember that beef between Google and the European Union from over the summer? It still has not been solved and it does not look like it will be anytime soon. According to Reuters, Google’s latest offer of a settlement with the EU has been rejected. To make matters worse, Google has reportedly been told that they are running out of time to settle the matter and will have to face formal charges. Reuters says that “EU antitrust chief Joaquin Almunia rejected the internet search giant’s latest concessions on Friday and warned that it has only a short time left to make a satisfactory offer.” The issue at hand is that Google blocked search results containing competitors.
Google’s latest offer was revised by a group of 125 companies that the commission deemed their rivals for feedback. One of the components of the offer was to “allow rivals to display their logos and make their web links more prominent to users.” Unfortunately, it was not strong enough and Almunia stated to Reuters that “there is little time left, but the ball is still in Google’s court. But within a short time frame the ball will then be here (with the European Commission) and then it will be the moment to take decisions.” For the European Union, an end is planned for spring 2014.
The Samsung vs Apple war is one of those wars that may never end. Last year’s famous copycat trial ended with a $1.05 billion reward for Apple, but $410 million of it was dropped by judge Lucy Koh after some mistakes were found in the jury’s calculations. A retrial took place in which Apple was awarded $290 million of that $410 million bringing the total damages to $930 million.
Samsung is now seeking a retrial of the retrial. Samsung is claiming racial bias because Apple compared Samsung to other Asian manufacturers that flooded the market with low-cost TVs that forced several U.S. companies into bankruptcy. It’s unlikely Koh will agree with this argument, and if so, Samsung will most likely take it to the Supreme Court and appeal the decision.
In the ongoing string of court battles between Samsung and Apple, Samsung has come out the loser in the latest round. This battle took place in South Korea where Samsung alleged Apple violated patents related to short message display methods and messaging group features. Samsung had asked the court to put a sales ban on the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5 and iPad 2 in place and they had asked for 100 million won ($95,000 USD) in damages. The judge in the Seoul Central District Court threw out the damages claim and refused to institute the sales ban.
In response to the latest ruling, Apple’s spokesman in Korea, Steve Park, said the company is “glad the Korean court joined others around the world in standing up for real innovation and rejecting Samsung’s ridiculous claims.” Apparently Park was not referring to a case last year in which Apple was found to have infringed on two of Samsung’s patents for wireless technology.