Lawsuit claims iPhone infringes call display patent

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
A new Massachusetts complaint accuses Apple of violating a patent for a basic call display system.



The five-page complaint by Romek Figa, who does business in the eastern US state as Abraham & Son, claims that "certain Apple telephones" use technology at the heart of a 1990 patent that describes a system which displays both the phone number of an inbound call. The technique matches up phone numbers with a contact list stored on the phone, allowing the device to associate a name with any incoming calls.



At least superficially, Apple's iPhone recalls the patent through its software database of contacts. Inbound calls to an iPhone from a number associated with a contact display the caller's name. However, the patent also references 1990s-era technologies, including a two-line LCD as well as a separate receiver.



Figa, who created and continues to own the patent, says that he has contacted Apple about licensing the patent. The California company, however, has reportedly declined the request "on the terms offered," though these are not mentioned in the lawsuit.



The complaint demands a jury trial and, if victorious, would seek an injunction against Apple barring it from selling the iPhone and infringing on the patent. It also seeks triple damages for knowing infringement.



Apple has not commented on the suit, which was filed late last week in a Massachusetts district court.
«13

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 50
    msnlymsnly Posts: 378member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    describes a system which displays both the phone number of an inbound call. The technique matches up phone numbers with a contact list stored on the phone, allowing the device to associate a name with any incoming calls.



    Don't all phones do that?
  • Reply 2 of 50
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,152member
    Another greedy person trying to squeeze some bucks out.



    I though patents expire 20 years from application date (14 years for designs)! Please correct me if I am wrong.
  • Reply 3 of 50
    ronboronbo Posts: 669member
    I'm just happy they didn't file it in Texas. It's begun to seem as though <A Certain Unnamed Texas Town, Yeah YOU Know Which One> has become the obligatory location for all lunatic patent lawsuits over the past few years. As a Texan myself, I'm ready to bulldoze the damned place. Preferably without evacuating the lawyers first.
  • Reply 4 of 50
    I hate patents.. only because I never think of things first.
  • Reply 5 of 50
    So is this guy gonna sue every cordless phone manufacturer too since my last 10 home phones have had caller ID and display the name of the caller of an inbound call? Where do people come up with this crap? I wish I had a nickel for every company that sued Apple. I'd be rich by now.
  • Reply 6 of 50
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ronbo View Post


    I'm just happy they didn't file it in Texas. It's begun to seem as though <A Certain Unnamed Texas Town, Yeah YOU Know Which One> has become the obligatory location for all lunatic patent lawsuits over the past few years. As a Texan myself, I'm ready to bulldoze the damned place. Preferably without evacuating the lawyers first.



    What's really needed is stronger jurisdiction rules. It seems as if all was necessary was a PO Box in the district for a while and you're in. Maybe that's what has been done because I haven't heard of suits filed from there in a while.
  • Reply 7 of 50
    tx65tx65 Posts: 31member
    He better sue motorola too,,, My razor does that, so did my blackberry and my wife's phone as well
  • Reply 8 of 50
    ronboronbo Posts: 669member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ronbo View Post


    I'm just happy they didn't file it in Texas. It's begun to seem as though <A Certain Unnamed Texas Town, Yeah YOU Know Which One> has become the obligatory location for all lunatic patent lawsuits over the past few years. As a Texan myself, I'm ready to bulldoze the damned place. Preferably without evacuating the lawyers first.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    What's really needed is stronger jurisdiction rules. It seems as if all was necessary was a PO Box in the district for a while and you're in. Maybe that's what has been done because I haven't heard of suits filed from there in a while.



    Well, okay....



    I still like my idea better, though
  • Reply 9 of 50
    Hahahaha!!! So, this guy is suing Apple for having the incoming call phone number displayed on the phone?!?!?!



    Where has he been for the last decade!!??
  • Reply 10 of 50
    julesjules Posts: 149member
    I just patented life everyone, so you all owe me 5 bucks.



    Yeesh... why does this sort of buffoonery happen only in the USA? Has no one got even a stitch of commonsense there or something?
  • Reply 11 of 50
    suhailsuhail Posts: 192member
    This is not a Caller ID feature which receives the caller's name and number from the phone company, this patent uses only the number from an incoming call and compares it with the phone's database to bring-up the name of the caller. It's not really a Caller-ID. Furthermore, and unlike Apple, other phone-companies who used his patent, probably returned his calls and paid the royalty fees.



    As mentioned before, Apple's assumed high profit margin of 50% on the iPhone (before the price drop) is not the actual profit margin, iPhone lawsuits will continue to pop-up in the future. Some companies will wait until the 'damage' is too great, some will settle, others will be dismissed.



    The screwed-up patent office needs a SMACK across the head.
  • Reply 12 of 50
    ...what a sad sad thing software patents have become in the US Patent Office system.



    Patents were supposed to push innovation, not harm it, which is pretty much what they are doing now.



    HJP
  • Reply 13 of 50
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post


    Another greedy person trying to squeeze some bucks out.



    I though patents expire 20 years from application date (14 years for designs)! Please correct me if I am wrong.



    Correct. 20 years from the filing date, which in this case was May 1988 so the patent expires in a few months. In addition, a patent can be dated to before the filing date in certain circumstances so it may already be ineffective, but any infringement when the patent was valid is actionable.
  • Reply 14 of 50
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MsNly View Post


    Don't all phones do that?



    idiot
  • Reply 15 of 50
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Jules View Post


    I just patented life everyone, so you all owe me 5 bucks.



    Yeesh... why does this sort of buffoonery happen only in the USA? Has no one got even a stitch of commonsense there or something?



    Dude, I patented the process of oxygen intake through a cavity, or cavities or opening, in the home sapien cranium. Otherwise known as breathing. I did this several years ago, so you are in violation of my patent, punk. You owe ME.
  • Reply 16 of 50
    Also, does this company actually make a cell phone which uses their patent? I thought so. So how can a company be entitled to compensatory damages on a patent which they don't even use?
  • Reply 17 of 50
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by His Dudeness View Post


    Dude, I patented the process of oxygen intake through a cavity, or cavities or opening, in the home sapien cranium. Otherwise known as breathing. I did this several years ago, so you are in violation of my patent, punk. You owe ME.



    And its a perpetual one. Its known as taxes. You breath 10.5 million times a year. If you paid $10,500 in annual taxes. Then you are paying the govt $0.001 cents per breath you take for that year.



    They've been doing it for years, and for many more years yet. Its a perpetual patent, doesn't ever expire. Your too late.
  • Reply 18 of 50
    But...but...but... someone HAS to be violating my patent! That's it. I'm suing the US Patent Office for violating my patent rights! I'm entitled to patents! Maybe I'll patent the process of applying for a patent, that way people will still owe me.
  • Reply 19 of 50
    wilcowilco Posts: 985member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by His Dudeness View Post


    Dude, I patented the process of oxygen intake through a cavity, or cavities or opening, in the home sapien cranium. Otherwise known as breathing. I did this several years ago, so you are in violation of my patent, punk. You owe ME.



    Dude, I just patented the concept of beating to death a weak joke that had already been done several times earlier in the thread -- not to mention in every thread ever about people suing Apple. You owe all of us.
  • Reply 20 of 50
    Oh yeah? Take a chill pill, which I patented as well.
Sign In or Register to comment.