ITC judge finds Apple in violation of one Motorola Wi-Fi patent

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
A judge with the U.S. International Trade Commission has deemed that Apple's products violate one Motorola Mobility patent related to Wi-Fi technology.

The judge's findings are still subject to review by the six members of the ITC, according to Bloomberg. But the ruling by ITC Judge Thomas Pender puts Motorola one step closer to potentially blocking the importation of Apple devices like the iPhone and iPad.

Pender found that Apple violated just one of four patents that Motorola had claimed in its ITC case. Motorola Mobility's entire patent portfolio will soon be Google's, presuming Chinese authorities approve the $12.5 billion acquisition.

The other three patents cited by Motorola in the case are related to the way a server tracks available applications, proximity sensors to prevent accidental button presses, and another related to Wi-Fi.

Motorola first sued Apple for alleged patent infringement in October of 2010. The original complaint included 18 total patents, ranging from 3G, to GPRS, to 802.11 wireless and antenna design.

The decision revealed on Tuesday is the second victory in as many days for Motorola. On Monday, ITC Judge David Shaw ruled that Microsoft's Xbox gaming consoles infringe on patents owned by Motorola Mobility.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 46


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    A judge with the U.S. International Trade Commission has deemed that Apple's products violate one Motorola Mobility patent related to Wi-Fi technology.



    The judge's findings are still subject to review by the six members of the ITC, according to Bloomberg. But the ruling by ITC Judge Thomas Pender puts Motorola one step closer to potentially blocking the importation of Apple devices like the iPhone and iPad.

     


     


     


    This sounds like very bad news for Apple.    


     


    That being said, I can't imagine that imports of Apple WiFi enabled devices will ever be banned.  This can be solved by Apple paying money, so I don't understand how blocking imports would be a reasonable path to follow.  


     


    If the ITC is right about the merits, Apple can and will pony up.  


     


    What remedies are available with the ITC?  I'm assuming that they can award damages, and not just issue injunctions.

  • Reply 2 of 46
    irnchrizirnchriz Posts: 1,588member
    Incredibly boring. In the end there will be cross licenses etc for the non essential patents and fair licenses for essential patents. And along the way Motorola will probably get their knuckles wrapped for trying to double dip on frand patents.
  • Reply 3 of 46
    penchantedpenchanted Posts: 1,070member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post



    Incredibly boring. In the end there will be cross licenses etc for the non essential patents and fair licenses for essential patents. And along the way Motorola will probably get their knuckles wrapped for trying to double dip on frand patents.


     


    What I find most annoying about this is that, once gain, Apple is accused of violating a FRAND-encumbered patent that Motorola has chosen to offer only in a discriminatory manner. I truly hope the EC and FTC look into these practices (by ALL parties) and takes action. My personal belief is that once a patent is declared standards-essential and available through FRAND terms, that the patent holder must publish pricing included any opportunity for discounts. "Non-discriminatory" should mean that all companies have access at the same price.

  • Reply 4 of 46


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post



    Incredibly boring. In the end there will be cross licenses etc for the non essential patents and fair licenses for essential patents.


     


    The problem with this theory is that Apple is reputed to be unwilling to license some of their non-essential patents, and also IIRC owns relatively few essential patents.


     


    If they can't or won't trade in patents, they might have little choice but to trade in dollars.  

  • Reply 5 of 46


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by penchanted View Post


     My personal belief is that once a patent is declared standards-essential and available through FRAND terms, that the patent holder must publish pricing included any opportunity for discounts. "Non-discriminatory" should mean that all companies have access at the same price.



     


    Not all companies deserve the same price or terms.   A company buying a small volume, who is also close to bankruptcy will not get the same terms as an industry giant who is willing, for example, to pay substantial interest (or maybe a higher price) for the priviledge of significant dating terms.


     


    It would not make good economic sense to treat different customers all the same.  No competent vendor does that.


     


     


    Think about it this way:  Say Samsung wanted to pay you a lot to use your tech in the new Galaxy S III, but wanted to delay payment until after the phone goes on sale.  You might well agree to that.


     


    But if RIM wanted to pay the same amount, and wanted to delay payment until after their new phone came out, you might turn that down, because you might be afraid that you would never get paid.  Indeed, you might charge RIM a higher price and demand pre-payment on a certain guaranteed minimum volume (to cover, at least, your transaction costs).  


     


    Different buyers get different prices and different terms for different reasons.

  • Reply 6 of 46
    j1h15233j1h15233 Posts: 274member


    So what happens when all these patent lawsuits are finally settled? Is any company going to be able to import anything? And if Motorola somehow succeeds in blocking the Xbox 360, the iPad and the iPhone from American buyers, who do they think is going to then turn around and buy crap from them?

  • Reply 7 of 46
    agramonteagramonte Posts: 345member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post


    So what happens when all these patent lawsuits are finally settled? Is any company going to be able to import anything? And if Motorola somehow succeeds in blocking the Xbox 360, the iPad and the iPhone from American buyers, who do they think is going to then turn around and buy crap from them?



     


    one company tells another - I will block half your stuff - the other one says - If you do that I will block half your stuff -


     


    they both settle and do a cross license agreement - they just trying to make Apple and Microsoft realize they can do as much damage as they can.

  • Reply 8 of 46


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post


    So what happens when all these patent lawsuits are finally settled? Is any company going to be able to import anything? And if Motorola somehow succeeds in blocking the Xbox 360, the iPad and the iPhone from American buyers, who do they think is going to then turn around and buy crap from them?



     


    In the estimation of some, there will be a larger number of better products once all these patent lawsuits are finally settled.


     


    And once pataent laws are substantially reformed, so they say, things will be even better than that.

  • Reply 9 of 46
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 1,854member


    This will come to a head when Apple throws its "Multi-Touch" patents at everyone in the industry.

  • Reply 10 of 46


    If Steve truly wanted to go thermonuclear on Google he would have offered to buy Moto Mobility a long time ago. It was obvious 2 years ago that Moto Mobility was the last nail in the coffin for Android.


     


    As it is...

  • Reply 11 of 46
    drdoppiodrdoppio Posts: 1,132member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post


    So what happens when all these patent lawsuits are finally settled? Is any company going to be able to import anything? And if Motorola somehow succeeds in blocking the Xbox 360, the iPad and the iPhone from American buyers, who do they think is going to then turn around and buy crap from them?



     


    You assume that settling the lawsuits will result in injunctions, which is unrealistic. The most desirable outcome is cross-licensing, allowing everyone adequate access to the technology and rewarding the IP rights holder.


  • Reply 12 of 46


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DrDoppio View Post


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post


    So what happens when all these patent lawsuits are finally settled? Is any company going to be able to import anything? And if Motorola somehow succeeds in blocking the Xbox 360, the iPad and the iPhone from American buyers, who do they think is going to then turn around and buy crap from them?



     


    You assume that settling the lawsuits will result in injunctions, which is unrealistic. The most desirable outcome is cross-licensing, allowing everyone adequate access to the technology and rewarding the IP rights holder.



     


    He meant "settle by a judge" and not "settled by the parties".  His language was sloppy, but his point was clear.

  • Reply 12 of 46
    just_mejust_me Posts: 590member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DrDoppio View Post


     


     


    You assume that settling the lawsuits will result in injunctions, which is unrealistic. The most desirable outcome is cross-licensing, allowing everyone adequate access to the technology and rewarding the IP rights holder.



     


    SJ dead = Thermonuclear dead = cross-licensing = lawyers win

  • Reply 14 of 46
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Just_Me View Post

    SJ dead = Thermonuclear dead = cross-licensing = lawyers win


     


    I somehow doubt that.

  • Reply 15 of 46


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Just_Me View Post


     


     


    SJ dead = Thermonuclear dead = cross-licensing = lawyers win



     


    = Consumers win = Stockholders Win = Stupid emotional vendettas lose

  • Reply 16 of 46
    j1h15233j1h15233 Posts: 274member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post


     


     


    He meant "settle by a judge" and not "settled by the parties".  His language was sloppy, but his point was clear.



     


    What I should have said is what happens when all these lawsuits are resolved or finished. I didn't mean settled the way it read.

  • Reply 17 of 46
    just_mejust_me Posts: 590member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post


     


     


    = Consumers win = Stockholders Win = Stupid emotional vendettas lose



     


    lol yeah.

  • Reply 18 of 46
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,687member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post




    Not all companies deserve the same price or terms.   A company buying a small volume, who is also close to bankruptcy will not get the same terms as an industry giant who is willing, for example, to pay substantial interest (or maybe a higher price) for the priviledge of significant dating terms.


     


    It would not make good economic sense to treat different customers all the same.  No competent vendor does that.


     


     


    Think about it this way:  Say Samsung wanted to pay you a lot to use your tech in the new Galaxy S III, but wanted to delay payment until after the phone goes on sale.  You might well agree to that.


     


    But if RIM wanted to pay the same amount, and wanted to delay payment until after their new phone came out, you might turn that down, because you might be afraid that you would never get paid.  Indeed, you might charge RIM a higher price and demand pre-payment on a certain guaranteed minimum volume (to cover, at least, your transaction costs).  


     


    Different buyers get different prices and different terms for different reasons.



    If they didn't want to abide by FRAND rules, then they shouldn't have offered their patents as FRAND. Non-discriminatory means exactly that. You can't charge one customer $5 and another $15.

  • Reply 19 of 46


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jungmark View Post




    Quote:

    Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post




    Not all companies deserve the same price or terms.   A company buying a small volume, who is also close to bankruptcy will not get the same terms as an industry giant who is willing, for example, to pay substantial interest (or maybe a higher price) for the priviledge of significant dating terms.


     


    It would not make good economic sense to treat different customers all the same.  No competent vendor does that.


     


     


    Think about it this way:  Say Samsung wanted to pay you a lot to use your tech in the new Galaxy S III, but wanted to delay payment until after the phone goes on sale.  You might well agree to that.


     


    But if RIM wanted to pay the same amount, and wanted to delay payment until after their new phone came out, you might turn that down, because you might be afraid that you would never get paid.  Indeed, you might charge RIM a higher price and demand pre-payment on a certain guaranteed minimum volume (to cover, at least, your transaction costs).  


     


    Different buyers get different prices and different terms for different reasons.



    If they didn't want to abide by FRAND rules, then they shouldn't have offered their patents as FRAND. Non-discriminatory means exactly that. You can't charge one customer $5 and another $15.



     


    There is no FRAND rule that says all buyers get the same price and terms.

  • Reply 20 of 46


    Funny how MOT was never good at software, so what happens?  They get acquired by a software company.  Go figure.  

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