Kodak lawsuit accuses Apple of violating four patents (u)

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014


Writhing Eastman Kodak, Co. has filed lawsuits against Apple and HTC claiming infringement of patent violations regarding digital imaging technology amid last-ditch efforts to keep business afloat.



The 132-year-old company sued Apple on Tuesday over a patent pertaining to the sharing of digital pictures between various electronic devices, and is seeking the halt of infringing products plus compensatory and triple damages, reports Reuters.



According to Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents, the claim accuses Apple of violating four digital photography patents Kodak said it obtained after "concluding it would be desirable for people to easily share pictures" from digital cameras without having to first upload them to a central PC.



Essentially, any Apple product with a camera is affected by the proposed suit, but specifically cited examples include the iPad 2, iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, and the iPod touch (4th generation).



It is unclear whether software like Apple's Photo Stream, which allows digital images taken on one iDevice to be pushed to other devices through the company's iCloud, or other third-party apps that allow for image transfer over Bluetooth or WiFi are being targeted in the suit.











The four patents in question:





on "automatically transmitting images from an electronic camera to a service provider using a network configuration file"



on a "network configuration file for automatically transmitting images from an electronic still camera"



on "capturing digital images to be transferred to an e-mail address"



on a "digital camera with communications interface for selectively transmitting images over a cellular phone network and a wireless LAN network to a destination"







Mueller noted that while Apple and HTC are suing each other in separate litigation, the two companies are likely to cooperate with each other over the Kodak suit. He goes on to say that the two handset makers will likely conduct prior art searches together as well as look for ways to narrow the scope of asserted patents in order to avoid liability for infringement.



The once monolithic all-things-camera maker has several irons in the fire, and is currently awaiting an ITC ruling regarding another patent dispute against Apple and Research in Motion that is scheduled for September 2012.



Kodak, a company with a name synonymous with photography, has been frantically treading water by attempting to sell off 1,100 patents under the looming threat of bankruptcy. The patent fire sale represents about ten percent of the company's entire IP portfolio.



The company is currently undergoing a major restructuring to cut costs and boost revenue, but shares were still at a dismal $0.58 at the end of Tuesday.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 47
    Well, at least we now know what is beyond beleaguered... "writhing".
  • Reply 2 of 47
    So Kodak is going all-in before they go bankrupt...



    It's sad to see such an iconic brand going the way of the Dodo, but video did kill the radio star.
  • Reply 3 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Santoanderson View Post


    So Kodak is going all-in before they go bankrupt...



    It's sad to see such an iconic brand going the way of the Dodo, but video did kill the radio star.



    Think about how long Kodak rode the film photography trend.



    They had some great darkroom merchandise and films but Kodak cameras were always synonymous with cheap. Maybe that's an area Kodak could have worked on over the last 30 years along with more innovation in the digital space.
  • Reply 4 of 47
    Kodak just needs to die already. This is clearly a last gasp attempt to wring some value from their patent portfolio before selling what little worth this once great company has left at something slightly higher than fire sale prices.
  • Reply 5 of 47
    techboytechboy Posts: 183member
    Kodak tried going digital. Meanwhile, they hung on to traditional media [printing press tech etc] but failed in that area too. An iconic company but just another example of poor management that does not understand the changing market. Of course, those that made the poor decisions won't have a hard time getting new jobs but everyone under them will.
  • Reply 6 of 47
    I think it's quite hilarious that Kodak is suing Apple over patents that Apple will own in about a year anyway.
  • Reply 7 of 47
    From the company that is currently filing for bankruptcy? WTF

    There should be a law barring dead companies from suing others.
  • Reply 8 of 47
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,484member
    Sadly even if Kodak had successfully switched from film to become king of digital cameras, they would still be dying today because smartphones are killing that market.



    The oil industry had a near-death experience when light bulbs replaced kerosene oil lamps but the invention of the automobile saved the day. Unfortunately for Kodak there is no new use for film.
  • Reply 9 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by island hermit View Post


    Think about how long Kodak rode the film photography trend.



    They had some great darkroom merchandise and films but Kodak cameras were always synonymous with cheap. Maybe that's an area Kodak could have worked on over the last 30 years along with more innovation in the digital space.



    Funny thing is, Apple didn't wipe Kodak off the map. Kodak put all their eggs in one basket: that digital photography would never be invented. Oops.
  • Reply 10 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post


    Funny thing is, Apple didn't wipe Kodak off the map. Kodak put all their eggs in one basket: that digital photography would never be invented. Oops.



    That's about as oops as someone who walks into the path of a drunk driver while on his lawn. You can't plan for the unexpected.
  • Reply 11 of 47
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AbsoluteDesignz View Post


    That's about as oops as someone who walks into the path of a drunk driver while on his lawn. You can't plan for the unexpected.



    That's nonsense.



    First, having all your eggs in one basket is ALWAYS risky.



    Second, it has been clear for at least a decade (VERY conservatively) that film cameras were going the way of the Dodo other than VERY limited applications. Heck, when I got my first QuickTake camera in the mid-90's, it was apparent that I would be spending less money paying for film to be developed.
  • Reply 12 of 47
    If Kodak had invested heavily in image sensor technology, they might own the market today.



    They had the resources to do so, but instead continued to make steady profits from film sales without doing anything.



    Now it's too late; other companies own the image sensor market and Kodak is dying. Oh well.



    The same thing happened to SGI; they refused to expand into consumer 3D rendering hardware, and look what happened; their best engineers left and founded Nvidia, and SGI is nearly a memory today.
  • Reply 13 of 47
    tinman0tinman0 Posts: 168member
    Love to know when those patents were posted as my Nokia could do all that (and video) in 2002. (Glorious 160x120 pixels or something round there.)
  • Reply 14 of 47
    rrobrrrobr Posts: 28member
    Kodak didn't have their head in the sand over digital.



    Kodak Photo CD, their 16 megapixel medium format digital back, that 12 MP DSLR for either Nikon or Canon lenses, all those point and shoot camera-Kodak was right there with products.



    They just made bad choices and didn't follow up on the good ones, didn't correct the problems in the products they had.
  • Reply 15 of 47
    Way to spin it, AI.
  • Reply 16 of 47
    just_mejust_me Posts: 590member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post


    Way to spin it, AI.



    Stories to feed the trolls.



    Remember apple can do no wrong.



    Apple can just buy Kodak even though Kodak is not for sale yet.
  • Reply 17 of 47
    aaarrrggghaaarrrgggh Posts: 1,574member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by zorinlynx View Post


    If Kodak had invested heavily in image sensor technology, they might own the market today.



    They had the resources to do so, but instead continued to make steady profits from film sales without doing anything.



    Now it's too late; other companies own the image sensor market and Kodak is dying. Oh well.



    The same thing happened to SGI; they refused to expand into consumer 3D rendering hardware, and look what happened; their best engineers left and founded Nvidia, and SGI is nearly a memory today.



    Kodak did have a number of innovations in image processing; I am not sure about sensor technology per-se, but they did not ignore the digital realm.



    The problem they have is they were by no means a nimble organization, and could not succeed in single-digit profit margin businesses. Consumer film is actually credited with much of their (pending) demise, as they built a big brand around a low margin business that went away. Their high-margin businesses (medical film comes to mind) supported the business; when that went away they couldn't cover their business.



    It is a shame... 15,000 employees will be on the street before too long. Good thing the 100 lawyers will keep the lights on.
  • Reply 18 of 47
    joncojonco Posts: 25member
    http://pluggedin.kodak.com/pluggedin/post/?id=687843

    The sensor in the Leica M8 & M9 are Kodak CCDs.
  • Reply 19 of 47
    Apple should just buy Kodak and fix the company.
  • Reply 20 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Just_Me View Post


    Apple can just buy Kodak even though Kodak is not for sale yet.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Bob NYC View Post


    Apple should just buy Kodak and fix the company.



    Look, you were right!
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