Legal Newsline

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Company sues Apple over FaceTime technology

By Jessica M. Karmasek | Sep 23, 2014

BROOKLYN, N.Y. (Legal Newsline) - A New York-based company that “builds and protects innovation” has filed a lawsuit against Apple Inc. over its FaceTime technology.

ITUS Corp.’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Secure Web Conference Corp., claims in its five-page complaint filed last week that Apple’s popular FaceTime video service and its hardware infringes on one of its earlier patents.

Secure Web is based out of Melville, New York, according to its Sept. 17 complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.

The company filed its patent infringement lawsuit in connection with its patented “key-based web conferencing encryption” technology.

According to its complaint, Secure Web was issued the patent -- U.S. Patent No. 6,856,687, or the ‘687 patent -- in February 2005.

The patent “discloses microprocessor-based devices that provide secure peer-to-peer communications with other devices over a network.”

Secure Web contends Apple has directly infringed on the patent by making, using, selling and/or offering for sale the following products, which include or are capable of running the FaceTime software application: all Macintosh computers with Intel Core i5 and i7 processors and Mac OS X v 10.6.6; all iPhone models that include an A7 or A8 processor and are capable of running iOS 7; and all iPad models that are cellular-enabled and that include an A7 or A8 processor and are capable of running iOS 7.

The company points out that Apple’s FaceTime, which debuted in 2010, is available via “hundreds of millions of devices.”

“Our company was a pioneer in developing and patenting encryption technologies that were originally used in devices sold to the U.S. military,” said Robert Berman, ITUS’s president and CEO.

“We recognized the monetization potential of these patents when we joined the company, and this lawsuit is the next step in realizing that potential.”

The case has been assigned to Judge Sandra J. Feuerstein, who will take senior status Jan. 21, 2015.

Gregory O. Koerner of Koerner Law Firm in New York and Jonathan T. Suder and Decker A. Cammack of Fort Worth-based Friedman Suder & Cooke are representing Secure Web in the case.

Apple could not immediately be reached for comment on the filing.

Safe Web, it notes, already has licensed the encryption patents to Logitech in connection with its LifeSize web conferencing service, and has a patent infringement lawsuit pending against Microsoft Corp. in connection with the Skype and Lync web conferencing services.

A claims construction, or Markman hearing, in the Microsoft lawsuit was scheduled for this week.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at patents@legalnewsline.com.

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