Apple's claim on Kodak patents denied

Apple's claim on Kodak patents denied

Summary: A U.S. bankruptcy judge has taken Apple to task - and refused its claim on two Kodak patents.

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TOPICS: Apple, Patents
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A U.S. bankruptcy judge has taken Apple to task - and refused its claim on two Kodak patents as the company "waited too long" to make ownership claims, according to Bloomberg.

kodak apple patent denied

Judge Allan Gropper ruled that the technology giant's claims on two patents were "unreasonably delayed" and attempting to wade through who-owns-what at this late stage would set back Kodak's bankruptcy case.

“If Apple’s claims proceed despite their unreasonably delayed commencement, Kodak might have to go back to the drawing board for ways to fund its case," the judge said.

In July, Kodak's request to sell over 1,000 patents under agreements anchored in bankruptcy protection was approved after filing for bankruptcy in January. However, Apple quickly claimed ownership of a number of patents -- based on inventions created when the two firms worked in collaboration to produce the QuickTake digital camera. The sale of so many patents is intended to help the company restructure as part of its bankruptcy plan.

The ruling mean that two out of 10 claims Apple has made are now redundant; both of which come from a Kodak portfolio dubbed the "digital-capture" group. Many of these patents are related to the capture, manipulation and sharing of images.

Kodak says their portfolio, containing a number of technologies used in cameras, smartphones and other devices has generated over $3 billion in revenue since 2001. Initial bids on patents are due to begin this week.

Kodak sued Apple in June, accusing the company of using the claim as part of a plan to disrupt the auction. A Kodak spokeswoman told the publication:

"With respect to several other patents to which Apple and Flashpoint only recently asserted ownership claims, Kodak believes that the facts will show that they are baseless, and nothing but an attempt to interfere with the sale of our patent portfolio."

Topics: Apple, Patents

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7 comments
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  • Apple: evil corporation

    Apple's opportunistic attempt to kick another company when it's down.
    Tim Acheson
    • Well said!

      This evil empire has taken its eyes off innovation. It is on to patent trolling like SCO. Will meet the same fate.
      Van Der
    • Kodak: Patent troll

      One that failed.
      athynz
  • Weren't the delays in Apple's claim

    caused by the bankruptcy courts to begin with? And now they are saying Apple took too long to lay their claim?

    Yes indeed judges CAN be bought!
    athynz
  • So is the court saying ...

    ... that nobody can claim ownership on their stuff because it would delay a bankruptcy??

    Remove the word Apple from the story, then think about this means. This decision sets a very ugly precedence.
    wackoae
    • Read a little further

      "The sale of so many patents is intended to help the company restructure as part of its bankruptcy plan."

      What will be delayed in the end is the restructuring of Kodak. The ugly precedence set should it be delayed due to Apple's claims is that any large company can prevent a company going through bankruptcy to recover quickly and extend its stay in credit limbo. In that sense it would be yet another point against for Apple PR. If the article is correct in the timing of the bankruptcy and the approval of the sales of patents Apple sure dragged its feet. They had about 6 months to make their claim.
      Xennex1170
      • delay restructuring

        Yes it looks a lot as though Apple is trying to prevent restructuring, which would result in bancruptcy, which presumably keeps the price down on the patents
        HugoM