Apple permitted to resurrect patent claims against Google's Motorola Mobility

Apple permitted to resurrect patent claims against Google's Motorola Mobility

Summary: In a U.S. appeal court, Apple has been granted the right to petition the ITC over Google unit Motorola Mobility allegedly violating intellectual property.

TOPICS: Apple, Google, Patents
Credit: CNET

Apple has won reprieve in a U.S.-based appeals court, a judge ruling that the tech giant can resurrect patent claims against Google-owned Motorola Mobility.

As reported by Reuters, the Federal U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C. found that the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) made a mistake by invalidating one Apple patent and finding that Google's Motorola Mobility unit did not violate another.

Both patents in question relate to the iPhone and iPad. U.S. Patent No. 7,663,607 can sense multiple touches in different locations, which allows the operating of a smartphone by touching and swiping its screen, whereas U.S. Patent No. 7,812,828 discloses how to make a touchscreen transparent.

Apple's original complaint against the Google-owned unit was filed in 2010, just before the search engine giant acquired Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion. The ITC originally ruled that Motorola Mobility did not violate patent 828, but in the opinion of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, posted today (.pdf), the agency was mistaken in the judgement, and should reconsider whether the company infringed upon Apple's patented technology.

"The ITC succumbed to the bias of hindsight as the record bears significant objective evidence that Apple's patent was innovative. The ITC erred in making an obviousness determination without fully considering evidence pertaining to industry praise, copying, and commercial success," Circuit Judge Kimberly Moore wrote.

In April, the ITC sided with Apple, dismissing a complaint by Motorola Mobility that the rival firm infringing on patented technology which makes touchscreens ignore fingers when users are making calls.

The court ruling means that the iPad and iPhone maker will be allowed to renew its arguments against Motorola Mobility now the case has been returned to the ITC for further scrutiny.

The ITC is often used to quickly resolve patent disputes between companies as the commission deals with cases more rapidly than the option of going through federal courts. The agency has the power to enact and enforce sales bans in the United States, although this power has recently come under scrutiny by the Obama Administration. The White House recently overturned an ITC ruling which prevented Apple from selling older versions of the AT&T iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPad 3G, iPad 2 3G devices in the United States, following a patent infringement suit with Samsung.

Topics: Apple, Google, Patents

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    Cupertino, CA -- Apple Computers today announced its largest acquisition to date, which it hopes will propel it to heretofore unseen levels of profitability.

    That acquisition is the Federal Government, and more specifically the Justice Department & the Federal Courts System. With recent reversals of settlements going in Apples favor, it looks like Apple's latest move is starting to pay off.

    In a related story, the Federal Elections Commission today announced it is looking into just who actually won the 2008 & 2012 elections.

    The person currently occupying 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue appears to be one Barrack Obama...but our sources tell us that it is in reality, George W. Bush, who was re-elected to his third & fourth terms in the two previous elections.

    How else can it be explained with so many dozens of Bush era policies still in effect, and the current level of corporate influence still running rampant in Washington? The voters THOUGHT they were voting for "Change" in the previous elections, but it appears now that NOTHING has changed...except for the monograms on the linens.

    Our reporters are hard at work in the field working on leads, so please check back for updates to this story as they become available.
    • Why?

      Why would Apple want to acquire an entity that loses money every year?
    • How can Apple buy the US Government?

      When the consortium of Halliburton, Exxon-Mobil, Ge, Viacom, Pfizer, HCA, etc. already own it? Or did they just allow Apple to buy into their cartel "lobbyists-r-us?" Why didn't M$oft blackball their admission to the club?

      NSA, I was only kidding. Honest.
  • How else can it be explained

    Wouldn't that then be "Obama era policies" still in effect?

    If a new administration doesn't change policies, it must mean that they like them, and therefore agree to adopt them as their own policies. A new Administration so filled with the desire for change, would change those policies to something they themselves designed.

    Unless that is they prefer the current policies, as it matches what they would have designed themselves.
    William Farrel
    • Not what was "promised" during the campaigns Mr. Farrel.

      When someone runs on a platform of "Change", and states over, and over, and over that if elected I will change this policy, and that policy, because they are not what the people supporting me like, and then once I get elected on these "promises" I turn my back on them, well that is simply a lie.

      But hey, virtually ALL politicians run this way, which pretty much makes them ALL liars. Surprise, surprise.
      • Partly true.

        The problem is that all politicians promise things they don't necessarily have control over. The President can promise to change policies, but he can do very little on his own. Policy changes usually require congressional approval. And the Congress is at a standstill right now because of Republican obstructionism.

        The fact that Mr. Boner won't put up a bill for a vote unless it has a majority of the majority has resulted in holding the country hostage. We are the laughing stock of the world right now. Congress and the Republicans are sitting on their hands and they have the audacity to take a month long vacation. It's practically criminal behavior due to dereliction of duty.
        • Not just this

          FISA, constitutional shredding via PRISM, SOD, Guantanamo Bay and more. We are the sickest joke because we fall for the lies of the two party pretend democracy when we should have learned better 30 years ago. Little different than Iran, where we say it's not a democracy because elites control the choices, although they have over 80% voter turnout and a paper trail.
      • Obama was a joke from the start

        It's not because he "can't do anything". He's done more than enough and most of it bad.
        Starting off he bat with the LA oil spill his administration caused ala Salazar, then expansion of mercenary thugs, warrentless wiretaps, unaccountable murders across the world, arresting doctors and nurses for trying to bring single payer into the health care debate, etc.
        He's done plenty, just nothing his people want to advertise.
  • PJ Sums It Up

    PJ on Groklaw sums up the ruling in one sentence: 'Apple made a lot of money and Time Magazine said the iPhone was the invention of the year, so it must be new and innovative, no matter what prior art you present. Sigh."
  • Circuit Judge Kimberly Moore doesn't know what she's talking about.

    What bias? What objective evidence? Is she a specialist in patent law? I doubt it.
  • For those(most everybody) who can't be bothered... read the judgement:
    "We are troubled by the ITC's obviousness analysis...We have repeatedly held that evidence relating to all four Graham factors -- including objective evidence of secondary considerations -- must be considered."

    The Graham Factors. from Graham v John Deere
    The Court held that obviousness should be determined by examining:
    The scope and content of the prior art
    The level of ordinary skill in the art
    The differences between the claimed invention and the prior art, and
    Objective evidence of nonobviousness.

    The court named the following non-obvious criteria.
    Commercial success
    Long-felt but unsolved needs, and
    The failure of others

    Long story short: The iPhone