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Patent lawsuit accuses Apple of display-related infringement

post #1 of 32
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Apple joins a number of electronics companies and TV manufacturers as the target of a new lawsuit alleging infringement of patents related to display technologies.

The new lawsuit filed by Advanced Display Technologies of Texas LLC claims Apple and others are infringing on U.S. Patent No. 5,739,931, "Illumination System Employing an Array of Microprisms," and U.S. Patent No. 6,261,664, "Optical Structures for Diffusing Light."

No specific Apple products are named in the suit, but the broad complaint accuses the Cupertino, Calif., company of patent violations with "computers, computer monitors, mobile telephones, and mobile media players." That would mean the lion's share of Apple products, including iPhones, Macs and iPods, are claimed to be in violation of both the '664 and '931 patents.

Apple is far from alone in the suit, joined by a number of other high-profile technology companies in the Advanced Display Technologies complaint. Among those named are computer maker Asus and rival smartphone maker research in motion.

Unsurprisingly, the display-related complaint also targets a number of companies that specialize in building television sets and computer montiros. Among those named are Haier, Vizio, Viewsonic and Sharp.



Though the lawsuit lists the company as "Advanced Display Technologies," a similarly named "Advance Display Technology" exists online at the website adtimediainc.com. That company describes itself as "a worldwide leader in proprietary digital display products specifically engineered for the human optical system."

One of the company's products is a mesh outdoor LED display architecture known as "SkyNet," claimed to feature "the latest in LED technology, design, durability and support.

The complaint was filed in a U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas, where patent lawsuits are often initiated in hopes of a favorable outcome.
post #2 of 32
Quote:
The complaint was filed in a U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas, where patent lawsuits are often initiated in hopes of a favorable outcome.

This has to stop.

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post #3 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Povilas View Post

This has to stop.

Here we go again! Backlighting monitors. Who'd have thought??!!

Next on the list, buttons on a keyboard... just wait....
post #4 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Povilas View Post

This has to stop.

At least this company was from Texas. When a company from say New York files in East Texas against a company from Calf. I can't even see how they would allow it.

But I agree completely that this has to stop. It is absolutely absurd.
post #5 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Povilas View Post

This has to stop.

It is quite ridiculous isn't it. There should be an investigation at the Federal level into this East Texas set up. If it were consistent with American Law and the rest of the country's court systems then it would not get so many claimants at its door!
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
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Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
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post #6 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Povilas View Post

This has to stop.

More like AppleInsider needs to stop devoting a new thread everytime one of these gets filed- like who really cares?
post #7 of 32
The complaint was filed in a U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas, where patent lawsuits are often initiated in hopes of a favorable outcome.

Why can't the GREAT State of Texas do something that will stop this district from making Texans look like idiots and predators because of these asinine court actions. Each one of them costs the defendants who in turn pass the costs onto their consumers.
post #8 of 32
SkyNet?

Seriously? Will James Cameron make an appearance?
post #9 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcahill009 View Post

At least this company was from Texas. When a company from say New York files in East Texas against a company from Calf. I can't even see how they would allow it.

But I agree completely that this has to stop. It is absolutely absurd.

It is pretty common for patent troll companies to set up shop in Texas.
post #10 of 32
The state of Texas has no control over this court. It is a Federal Court. The judges are appointed by the President. One judge in particular, T. John Ward seems to be a favorite for patent lawsuits. Patent lawsuit in that federal district have increased over 10 times what they were before he became a judge there. And the plaintiffs in his patent cases seem to win at a higher rate than the defendants compared to other district courts. Losers in patent cases can appeal to the Federal District Court of Appeals, and then on to the Supreme Court.
post #11 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by TomMcIn View Post

The complaint was filed in a U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas, where patent lawsuits are often initiated in hopes of a favorable outcome.

Why can't the GREAT State of Texas do something that will stop this district from making Texans look like idiots and predators because of these asinine court actions. Each one of them costs the defendants who in turn pass the costs onto their consumers.

I'm no expert in law or finance, but perhaps the tax revenue?

I hate these patent hoarding, squatting companies. What I hate even more is this type of courts and judges.
post #12 of 32
Funny how in each and every one of these threads so many legal experts come out of the woodwork.
Please don't be insane.
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post #13 of 32
Even if the complaint is valid, shouldn't the lawsuit be against the suppliers of the infringing component? Is it Apple's responsibility to investigate every single component to ensure every single supplier isn't infringing on someone else's patent? What's next, am I going to be sued because I bought a TV that uses this technology?
post #14 of 32
This is the first time i get so many consequent replies.

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post #15 of 32
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Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

Funny how in each and every one of these threads so many legal experts come out of the woodwork.

We are talking about a country where you can buy a gun (legally) one day and shoot 6 people the next (including some politician, Giffords right?). It goes without saying that legal system you have there is pretty f'ed.

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post #16 of 32
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Originally Posted by Povilas View Post

We are talking about a country where you can buy a gun (legally) one day and shoot 6 people the next (including some politician, Giffords right?). It goes without saying that legal system you have there is pretty f'ed.

You are an idiot.
post #17 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The complaint was filed in a U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas, where patent lawsuits are often initiated in hopes of a favorable outcome.

This may be the first case that actually should have been filed in Marshall. The boys in East Texas have gained quite a reputation for being friendly towards those seeking damages.

Makes me wonder if these good ole boys are on a commission?

(Note: I do call Texas home as I went to high school here, TAMU and returned later with a family - my wife is also from Texas. I am in no way proud of what they are doing. )

"Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain".
post #18 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by TomMcIn View Post

Why can't the GREAT State of Texas do something that will stop this district from making Texans look like idiots and predators because of these asinine court actions.

Ummmm, because they are.

(apologies to the previous poster. He's uses a Mac so he's okay)
post #19 of 32
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Originally Posted by Patranus View Post

You are an idiot.

I usually am. Anything else?

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post #20 of 32
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Originally Posted by Povilas View Post

I usually am. Anything else?

Yeah. Your reply was completely irrelevant.
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post #21 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

Yeah. Your reply was completely irrelevant.

It usually is.

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post #22 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by msimpson View Post

The state of Texas has no control over this court. It is a Federal Court. The judges are appointed by the President. One judge in particular, T. John Ward seems to be a favorite for patent lawsuits. Patent lawsuit in that federal district have increased over 10 times what they were before he became a judge there. And the plaintiffs in his patent cases seem to win at a higher rate than the defendants compared to other district courts. Losers in patent cases can appeal to the Federal District Court of Appeals, and then on to the Supreme Court.

----

Hopefully, Texans did not expect to get this type of publicity because of a Federal appointment. Interested in the President that gave birth to these filings.

Glad there are levels of appeal to get a just decision, assuming the appeal costs justify the extra expense. Each case costs the defendants, and eventually the consumers, world wide. "Loser pays all expenses" should help reduce troll type claims.
post #23 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Povilas View Post

It usually is.

Okay, so everybody has to be good at something.
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post #24 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Povilas View Post

We are talking about a country where you can buy a gun (legally) one day and shoot 6 people the next (including some politician, Giffords right?). It goes without saying that legal system you have there is pretty f'ed.

IMO you are a jerk.

Someone can buy a bat, car, rat poison and / or a million other things and kill people with them.
THINGS don't kill people. PEOPLE kill people with things.

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post #25 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Realistic View Post

Someone can buy a bat, car, rat poison and / or a million other things and kill people with them.
THINGS don't kill people. PEOPLE kill people with things.

I have to agree with the last 2 sentences (I know not if you are an idiot).

Actually, for handguns, you have to wait a week. Also, a background check is done (little good that did in this case) but those can take several days. Not quite as much of a "run in, throw your cash down and you are out on your wild killing spree". Not much different you say - it does try to weed out those felons, registered crazies etc. However the gun law stops no one from buying from an acquaintance, criminal, etc. or someone else buying the gun for them (straw man purchase). This is the same problem everywhere, law or not. Those that want guns get them. Period.
post #26 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by iLiver View Post

More like AppleInsider needs to stop devoting a new thread everytime one of these gets filed- like who really cares?

Such a jaundiced view, iLiver.
post #27 of 32
Wow, this thread when to shiite in a hurry.
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post #28 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

Funny how in each and every one of these threads so many legal experts come out of the woodwork.

Sure, but still, I'll ask the same question I asked a few patent threads ago: if the the outcomes of patent cases before this particular judge's court are clearly out of line with the national norm (and apparently they are, else why the fondness for filing in this district?), how is that not evidence of judicial misconduct?

Not only am I not a lawyer, I have no earthly idea how this sort of thing is generally regarded, but I would have thought statistically significant variance from average outcomes would at least raise an eyebrow or two. Unless the theory is that you only go to Texas if you have a solid case to make, which doesn't really make much sense.
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post #29 of 32
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Originally Posted by addabox View Post

Sure, but still, I'll ask the same question I asked a few patent threads ago: if the the outcomes of patent cases before this particular judge's court are clearly out of line with the national norm (and apparently they are, else why the fondness for filing in this district?), how is that not evidence of judicial misconduct?

Not only am I not a lawyer, I have no earthly idea how this sort of thing is generally regarded, but I would have thought statistically significant variance from average outcomes would at least raise an eyebrow or two. Unless the theory is that you only go to Texas if you have a solid case to make, which doesn't really make much sense.

I asked some patent threads back if this court was overturned routinely on appeal. Not that anyone knows the answer, but it doesn't stop them from expressing the strongly held opinions that it's court of choice for "patent whores."
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post #30 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

I asked some patent threads back if this court was overturned routinely on appeal. Not that anyone knows the answer, but it doesn't stop them from expressing the strongly held opinions that it's court of choice for "patent whores."

I don't know the overturn rate, but a couple Supreme Court justices supposedly made some comments of concern a year or two ago. The fact I read that in another thread here should put some pause into it, but IIRC there was an article reference at the time that made me think it wasn't all wet.
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post #31 of 32
The web site, if it is the one for the person suing, seems to make a completely different form of product. If they are behind the new billboard signs I see, well, that's quite a new product.

I don't think it actually relates to apple, but IANAL.
post #32 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

Even if the complaint is valid, shouldn't the lawsuit be against the suppliers of the infringing component? Is it Apple's responsibility to investigate every single component to ensure every single supplier isn't infringing on someone else's patent? What's next, am I going to be sued because I bought a TV that uses this technology?

Perhaps in this case, apple does design most of the parts down to the component level. With the new A4 processor you can bet anything patent related to cpu's will make apple liable now.
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