Apple gets new HTC devices held by Customs; maybe I will see LTE network before the EVO 4G LTE

Summary:The lawsuits in the mobile space are plentiful and it looks like this one from Apple against HTC has some real teeth to it as HTC's newest devices are being held up in Customs for an indefinite period of time.

Last month I wrote about the HTC EVO 4G LTE and wondered if it may have me adding Sprint to my collection yet again. After returning my Nokia Lumia 900 and canceling my AT&T contract, I pre-ordered an EVO 4G LTE primarily because the HTC One X is fantastic (EVO 4G LTE is similar and better with microSD and removable battery) and I wanted unlimited data. I won't see LTE here in Seattle for a while and after getting an email from HTC maybe I won't even see the HTC EVO 4G LTE until the network goes live.

As part of the Apple lawsuit against HTC, the HTC EVO 4G LTE and HTC One X are currently being held by U.S. Customs and we have no idea when they might be released to the public. I haven't heard anything from Sprint or AT&T yet on what their plans are and know that Sprint just issued several press releases announcing that stores were opening early on Friday for the EVO 4G LTE. An HTC spokesperson provided the following quote:

The US availability of the HTC One X and HTC EVO 4G LTE has been delayed due to a standard U.S. Customs review of shipments that is required after an ITC exclusion order. We believe we are in compliance with the ruling and HTC is working closely with Customs to secure approval. The HTC One X and HTC EVO 4G LTE have been received enthusiastically by customers and we appreciate their patience as we work to get these products into their hands as soon as possible.

I am not a lawyer and won't begin to judge one company over another in regards to what should be protected and not copied, but it's sad to see HTC's unique designs be held up from consumers. The only good thing here is that I might see the LTE network launch before I actually get my device.

UPDATE: I understand one of the 2 patented issues holding things up is the ability to tap a phone number on a web page or email and activate the phone dialer. What mobile OS DOESN'T support this? It is a basic function that everyone expects on a smartphone and I sure hope HTC doesn't actually have to remove this capability to get the phones into the U.S. for sale.

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Topics: HTC, Apple, Mobility, Networking

About

Matthew Miller started using a mobile devices in 1997 and has been writing news, reviews, and opinion pieces ever since. He is a co-host with GigaOM's Kevin Tofel on the MobileTechRoundup podcast and an author of three Wiley Companion series books. Matthew started using mobile devices with a US Robotics Pilot 1000 and has owned over 200 d... Full Bio

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