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Apple accused of violating patents related to media on iPhone, iPod

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
A patent holder that last sued Apple in 2009 has targeted the iPhone maker again, this time accusing the company of violating two patents related to media playback.

Affinity Labs last sued Apple in 2009, accusing the company of violating three patents related to streaming and downloading of content. This week, the company fired another shot, accusing Apple of violating two more patents:
U.S. Patent No. 7,634,228: "Content delivery system and method"
U.S. Patent No. 7,778,595: "Method for managing media"
The lawsuit specifically cites the "iPhone, iPod touch and iPhone line of products," claiming that the audio systems found in Apple's portable devices violates the '228 patent. Only the iPhone is accused of violating the '595 patent.

Also named in the complaint, filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, is AAMP of Florida Inc., a company that makes products designed to integrate portable digital devices into car audio systems. Named in the suit are its products under the "iSimple" brand, including the iSimple Gateway product.



Affinity Labs seeks damages from the court, as well as applicable attorneys' fees, and has asked that both Apple and AAMP be prohibited from further alleged infringement. The lawsuit was filed in court on Tuesday.

The official website for Affinity Labs describes it as an "innovation company" that "can be the key to your future."

"We generate new product and business ideas and consult on intellectual property matters to help protect those ideas," the company description reads. "And while we love the role of innovator, our most valuable service may lie in fostering the innovation skills of others."
post #2 of 29
These Eastern District of Texas lawsuits makes me wish Texas would secede from the nation.
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post #3 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

These Eastern District of Texas lawsuits makes me wish Texas would secede from the nation.

It wouldn't really help, the problem is the patents, these are doozies. Now a bunch of people will get annoyed about patent trolls and suggest impossible changes to the legal system aimed specifically at trolls while leaving Apple's IP untouched, a few of us will try to argue that the problem is endemic to the IP system and a few crazies will insist that IP is a divine right that must be protected and infringement is akin to home invasion.

As for me, having read as far as the first claim on both patents I'm going to make a stiff drink.
post #4 of 29
NPR and PRI's This American Life devoted an entire hour to the patent mess. It really is worth a listen.

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/M...t?id=201671138

or

http://www.thisamericanlife.org/
post #5 of 29
Well, at least this one actually looks more legitimate and less troll-ish.
post #6 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

These Eastern District of Texas lawsuits makes me wish Texas would secede from the nation.

I'm with you. It certainly couldn't hurt. As long as they move the sxsw music festival.
post #7 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlevier View Post

Well, at least this one actually looks more legitimate and less troll-ish.

How do you figure? Affinity Labs is another "company" that produces nothing (except lawsuits) and is most likely a shell company of Intellectual Ventures, the biggest troll under the bridge.
post #8 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlevier View Post

Well, at least this one actually looks more legitimate and less troll-ish.

Nope.

First both patents are multiple continuations, then both are extremely broad and yes obvious, finally it's a non practicing entity.

This is textbook troll.
post #9 of 29
It would be nice if the tech blogs resisted the temptation to publish every filing of a lawsuit.
post #10 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloudgazer View Post

Nope.

First both patents are multiple continuations, then both are extremely broad and yes obvious, finally it's a non practicing entity.

This is textbook troll.

I have read the patents Apple is suing HTC about and they are just a vague as these. Remember, this kind of nonsense works both ways. Apple (and any other company) cannot expect to play the patent game and then not find itself a target of lawsuits as well.
post #11 of 29
Both patents discuss things in broad terms with zero specificity. For example '228 claims to have invented the concept of a button on a screen that displays a file on the device. Both patents were filed after the publlc debut of the iPhone. '228 was filed in March 2007 and '595 was filed in January 2008. This case will be tossed.

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post #12 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by lamewing View Post

I have read the patents Apple is suing HTC about and they are just a vague as these. Remember, this kind of nonsense works both ways. Apple (and any other company) cannot expect to play the patent game and then not find itself a target of lawsuits as well.

You are preaching to the choir - I'm one of the guys saying this a fundamental problem with software patents. About all I can say for Apple's patents asserted against HTC, is that at least they're not continuations.
post #13 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

A patent holder that last sued Apple in 2009 has targeted the
U.S. Patent No. 7,634,228: "Content delivery system and method"
U.S. Patent No. 7,778,595: "Method for managing media"

Well 595 was originally filed in March 2007, thats after the iPhone was shown to the public, so, the are fucked on that one.
The other is a year before the iPod and is pretty much about how the device communicates with a car kit and stereo etc. However, I am sure that there were PDA's etc before 2000 which used a 'soft' button to represent a media file and by selecting this 'soft' button caused it to playback. So if thats the angle they are going on there is plenty of prior art around.
post #14 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post

Both patents were filed after the publc debut of the iPhone. '228 was filed in March 2007 and '595 was filed in January 2008. Both patents discuss things in broad term, with zero specificity. For example '228 claims to have invented the concept of a button on a screen that displays a file on the device. This case will be tossed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post

Well 595 was filed in 2007 thats a year after the iPhone came out so they are fucked on that one.

They're both continuations and claim the priority of the original patents which in both cases is 2000.
post #15 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesJpn View Post

NPR and PRI's This American Life devoted an entire hour to the patent mess. It really is worth a listen.

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/M...t?id=201671138

or

http://www.thisamericanlife.org/

That is really a splendid program. The moment when they trace Lodsys back the Nathan Myrhold's (sp?) company, and to the same apparently empty office in Marshall, Texas -- that's the capper. Also, the program drew my attention to the fact that the patent office resisted giving software patents for years until forced into it by two Supreme Court decisions in the '90s, that's the kind of insight that only good, investigative journalism can give you. Hats off to This American Life.

Who's throttling American prosperity? Not malpractice suits. Not consumer protections. It's this kind of bullcrap that has no productive use whatsoever. Funny how you don't get the big Republican machine talking about this, huh?

I say, copyright software, except maybe for codecs or other very complicated, difficult programming that vastly expands what we can do. Then, say the maximum term is five years, or ten if you reapply for the patent.
post #16 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by lamewing View Post

I have read the patents Apple is suing HTC about and they are just a vague as these. Remember, this kind of nonsense works both ways. Apple (and any other company) cannot expect to play the patent game and then not find itself a target of lawsuits as well.

Nice try but having read both sets in detail (not skimming), I would have to categorically disagree with you. Are you sure you read these patents thoroughly and/or understand the concepts expressed? I cannot fathom how you could make that claim if you did.
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post #17 of 29
Quote:
These Eastern District of Texas lawsuits makes me wish Texas would secede from the nation.

The secessionists have conveniently forgotten how horrible a period in the state's history it was before they became a state and how utterly broke they were and how hard Texas fought for statehood.
post #18 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by lilgto64 View Post

The secessionists have conveniently forgotten how horrible a period in the state's history it was before they became a state and how utterly broke they were and how hard Texas fought for statehood.


And now it's become the tail that wags the dog.
post #19 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloudgazer View Post

They're both continuations and claim the priority of the original patents which in both cases is 2000.




edit: Found it: This application is a continuation of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/947,755 (filed Sep. 23, 2004 and now U.S. Pat. No. 7,324,833, to issue Jan. 29, 2008) entitled "System and Method for Connecting a Portable Audio Player to an Automobile Sound System," which is a continuation of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/537,812 (filed Mar. 28, 2000 and now U.S. Pat. No. 7,187,947, issued Mar. 6, 2007) entitled "System and Method for Communicating Selected Information to an Electronic Device," the disclosures of which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entirety for all purposes.


Surely a continuation of an existing patent to add in something you saw in January 2007 has to be complete bullshit though? That would be like me having a patent for radio in 2000 but then extending it in 2011 to cover a device made from metal and glass with a touch interface to play back music.
post #20 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post

Surely a continuation of an existing patent to add in something you saw in January 2007 has to be complete bullshit though? That would be like me having a patent for radio in 2000 but then extending it in 2011 to cover a device made from metal and glass with a touch interface to play back music.

You might hope it, I might hope it, but US patent law seems to mostly allow it. USPTO even tried to limit continuation patents and got slapped down by the courts for it.
post #21 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloudgazer View Post

It wouldn't really help, the problem is the patents, these are doozies. Now a bunch of people will get annoyed about patent trolls and suggest impossible changes to the legal system aimed specifically at trolls while leaving Apple's IP untouched, a few of us will try to argue that the problem is endemic to the IP system and a few crazies will insist that IP is a divine right that must be protected and infringement is akin to home invasion.

As for me, having read as far as the first claim on both patents I'm going to make a stiff drink.

Nail on head. End of thread.
post #22 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by lamewing View Post

I have read the patents Apple is suing HTC about and they are just a vague as these. Remember, this kind of nonsense works both ways. Apple (and any other company) cannot expect to play the patent game and then not find itself a target of lawsuits as well.

The assumption being that Apple wouldn't get sued if they didn't sue anyone, which is of course nonsense.
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post #23 of 29
What is "Upon information and believe" supposed to mean?

Is it that it's an educated guess?
post #24 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by astra4 View Post

What is "Upon information and believe" supposed to mean?

Is it that it's an educated guess?

Context?
post #25 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by markbyrn View Post

It would be nice if the tech blogs resisted the temptation to publish every filing of a lawsuit.

Agreed. That, or people stop having the attitude that Apple should sue everybody but Apple themselves should not be sued.
post #26 of 29
Apple should have a separate section labeling any profits and losses due to one time settlements in lawsuits.

It should actually be part of the income statement.

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post #27 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Galbi View Post

Apple should have a separate section labeling any profits and losses due to one time settlements in lawsuits.

It should actually be part of the income statement.

Does your beloved Samsung?

http://www.cellular-news.com/story/50122.php
http://www.ip-holdings.com/patent-in...ttlements-news
etc.
post #28 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesJpn View Post

NPR and PRI's This American Life devoted an entire hour to the patent mess. It really is worth a listen.

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/M...t?id=201671138

or

http://www.thisamericanlife.org/

I heard it on the weekend. Prepare to be irritated.
post #29 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elian Gonzalez View Post

I heard it on the weekend. Prepare to be irritated.

Yep. Infuriated.

Lodsys aka Intellectual Ventures aka Oasis Research seem to be bereft of scruples and come across as nothing more than Patent-sluts, excuse my French. What a blatant scam.

Imagine if Disk Fosbury or Debbie Brill had patented their jumping styles, or if someone patented the FIFO cost accounting method?

Oasis Research should buy the silly walk patent from Monty Python so they can sue both the Indian and Pakistani governments....
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZ0ue-XGl9c
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