NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - A New York company that develops phone operating systems claims in a federal court filing that Apple’s iPhones, iPads and the new Apple Watch infringes four of its patents.
Last week, IXI Mobile Ltd. filed its 15-page complaint against the technology giant in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
The dispute involves technology called “mobile tethering,” which permits a device to access a wide area network, such as the Internet, by way of a connection between the first device and a second, intermediary device that has access to the same network.
An example is the use of a cell phone as a source of Internet connectivity for a personal computer that is linked with the phone.
Mobile tethering permits devices having only short-range connectivity to access distant networks using the long-range wireless connectivity of a second device.
The dispute also involves technology relating to remote control of mobile devices.
New York-based IXI, formed in 2009, claims it is the exclusive licensee and IXI IP is the owner of U.S. Patent Nos.: 7,295,532, titled “System, Device and Computer Readable Medium for Providing Networking Services on a Mobile Device,” issued in November 2007; 7,426,398, titled “Event Control System and Method for a Mobile Communication Network,” issued in September 2008; 7,016,648, titled “Method, System and Computer Readable Medium for Downloading a Software Component to a Device in a Short Distance Wireless Network,” issued in March 2006; and 7,039,033, titled “System, Device and Computer Readable Medium for Providing a Managed Wireless Network Using Short-Range Radio Signals,” issued in May 2006.
According to IXI’s complaint, Apple’s iPhone and iPad products, along with its Apple Watch -- a new “smartwatch” that will be available for sale in early 2015 -- “embody the apparatuses or practice the methods” claimed by the patents-in-suit because of their wireless hotspot and/or remote control features.
“The fields of mobile tethering, cellular telephony, and Internet connectivity are covered by many United States patents and patent applications claiming various aspects of these technologies, and it is a routine practice in these fields for major manufacturers and service providers to canvass United States patents and pending patent applications in order to identify those which may be relevant to a product or service to be made, used, sold, or offered for sale in, or imported into the United States prior to commencing such making, use, selling, offering, or importing,” IXI wrote.
It continued, “On information and belief, in researching the patentability of their patents, Apple should have become aware of all of the Patents-in-Suit. In addition, Apple received actual notice of its infringement of the Patents-in-Suit at least as early as the date of service of this complaint.
“Therefore, Apple was aware of the Patents-in-Suit or willfully blinded themselves as to the existence of the Patents-in-Suit and made, used, sold, offered to sell, imported and/or encouraged the making, using, selling, offering to sell, or importing of the Accused Products despite knowing of an objectively high likelihood that its actions constituted infringement of the Patents-in-Suit at all times relevant to this suit.”
IXI is seeking a permanent injunction against Apple, along with a damages award in an amount “to be ascertained at trial,” including at least a “reasonable” royalty on sales of the accused Apple products and/or IXI’s lost profits.
The company also is asking the court to assess pre-judgment and post-judgment interest and costs against Apple, together with an award of such interest and costs, and a determination that the case is exceptional and a corresponding award of “reasonable” attorneys fees.
Apple could not immediately be reached for comment on the filing.
From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.