Seagate files suit against STEC for SSD patent infringement

Hard drive giant Seagate Technology has filed a lawsuit against rival STEC Inc, claiming patent infringement. The Solid State Drive (SSD) war has begun.

Hard drive giant Seagate Technology has filed a lawsuit against rival STEC Inc, claiming patent infringement. The Solid State Drive (SSD) turf war has begun.

Seagate claims that STEC SSD products violate four patents held by the company.

This isn't about money, it's about marking territory:

"It’s not a big financial issue yet because the market is just taking off," said William D. Watkins, chief executive of Seagate, which is based in Scotts Valley, Calif. "But that’s why we want to set things straight now."

Mr. Watkins said the goal of the suit was to promote the kind of cross-licensing and partnerships that have always been part of the hard-drive market.

As Watkins says, this isn't about money. Companies have spent a substantial amount of money on SSD R&D and Seagate is not looking for acknowledgement and cross-licensing opportunities to reduce future R&D costs. This not only makes sense for the bottom line, but also in for the consumer because cross-licensing means broad compatibility.