Apple's chips targeted in a new patent infringement suit

Posted:
in General Discussion
Apple has become the target of another lawsuit from a company exhibiting patent troll-like behavior, with Sonrai Memory alleging Apple infringed a pair of patents has acquired.




Filed at the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas on July 15, the lawsuit by Sonrai Memory Limited against Apple accuses the Cupertino tech giant of infringing on two patents in its possession.

One patent, 6,874,014, is titled "Chip multiprocessor with multiple operating systems, dating back to 2005. The other, 6,724,241, is called a "Variable charge pump circuit with dynamic load," first granted in 2004.

According to the filing, spotted by Patently Apple, the infringements involve a long list of Apple products, going as far back as the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, the fifth-generation iPad, all iPad Pro generations, and various MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models.

Apple infringes the 014 patent with technology used in the A-series, M-series, and T-series chipsets, the filing claims. Meanwhile, the 241 involve the SK Hynix NAND Flash die, a chip used for handling storage.

The filing demands damages, costs, expenses, interest, a judgment for ongoing licensing fees, and "reasonable attorneys' fees." A trial by jury is also requested.

Apple is regularly the target for patent-related lawsuits, and in some cases, the suits are made by non-practicing entities (NPEs), which are also known by the term "patent trolls."

In the case of Sonrai Memory, it seems to be exhibiting many behaviors that make it seem like it is an NPE. The company isn't known for making actual products or offering services, outside of lawsuits, but did acquire the patents in the suit from Hewlett-Packard and semiconductor company Atmel.

Sonrai Memory has also filed similar patent infringement suits against Western Digital, Google, Samsung, LG, Lenovo, and others since July 2021.

It also seems that the registration of the company itself is very NPE-like in nature. According to the Irish Times, Sonrai Memory Limited and several NPEs share the same address in Dublin, as well as directors, with the firms all holding patents for technologies and have been involved in litigation.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,009member
    Patents from 2004 and 2005 would have to be extremely general to match anything being designed today. 
    killroyradarthekatwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 2 of 29
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 3,057member
    There is nothing illegal with any company that "exhibits patent-troll like behaviour." Designating them with the demeaning word "trolls" shows bias. In a free market there are many speculative ways to make money, and obtaining patents and testing them in court is a legal and valid way to make money. Apple itself probably buys patents by buying companies that own patents, which is also a form of speculating in the patent trade. It's actually smart behaviour. I've never seen AppleInsider criticize Apple for buying companies with patents, for the patents. What's the difference? Why the double standard?

    When Apple bought 17,000 patents from Intel two years ago, AppleInsider didn't call Apple a "troll" but rather suggested it was smart of Apple to purchase them.

    https://appleinsider.com/articles/19/07/25/apple-buys-intel-4g-and-5g-modem-patent-portfolio-for-1-billion <--

    MrBunsidebeowulfschmidtchadbagFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 3 of 29
    applesauce007applesauce007 Posts: 1,686member
    There is nothing illegal with any company that "exhibits patent-troll like behaviour." Designating them with the demeaning word "trolls" shows bias. In a free market there are many speculative ways to make money, and obtaining patents and testing them in court is a legal and valid way to make money. Apple itself probably buys patents by buying companies that own patents, which is also a form of speculating in the patent trade. It's actually smart behaviour. I've never seen AppleInsider criticize Apple for buying companies with patents, for the patents. What's the difference? Why the double standard?

    When Apple bought 17,000 patents from Intel two years ago, AppleInsider didn't call Apple a "troll" but rather suggested it was smart of Apple to purchase them.

    https://appleinsider.com/articles/19/07/25/apple-buys-intel-4g-and-5g-modem-patent-portfolio-for-1-billion <--

    -----------------

    There is no double standard.
    The difference is that Apple makes  products with its patents, It does not buy them just to litigate.  
    The term is well defined as shown below and if the term fits a company then it should be used to describe the company.

    pat·ent troll
    noun
    DEROGATORY•INFORMAL

    a company that obtains the rights to one or more patents in order to profit by means of licensing or litigation, rather than by producing its own goods or services.
    1. "patent trolls are quashing the next, nascent wave of tech innovation"
    fotoformatkillroygeekmeeScot1watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 4 of 29
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 3,057member
    There is no requirement under the patent system that the patent inventor needs to also be the manufacturer who produces the goods based on his patent. That is a myth. The whole patent system encourages innovation by allowing people who don't manufacture things to get rewarded from designing things without having to manufacture them. You don't need to build mousetraps to be able to patent one. You aren't a "troll" just because you are an inventor and not a manufacturer. 

    By saying, as you do, Appelsauce007, that only companies big enough to manufacture their patents are legitimate patent holders, you are undermining one of the great benefits of the patent system. Under your logic, if you bequeathed a patent to your child upon your death, your child would become "a patent troll" because they didn't produce their own goods or services based on the patent they inherited form you. That's wrong. I celebrate the fact that people can hold patents without being manufacturers, whereas you deride it.
    muthuk_vanalingambeowulfschmidtFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 5 of 29
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 1,912member
    There is no requirement under the patent system that the patent inventor needs to also be the manufacturer who produces the goods based on his patent. That is a myth. The whole patent system encourages innovation by allowing people who don't manufacture things to get rewarded from designing things without having to manufacture them. You don't need to build mousetraps to be able to patent one. You aren't a "troll" just because you are an inventor and not a manufacturer. 

    By saying, as you do, Appelsauce007, that only companies big enough to manufacture their patents are legitimate patent holders, you are undermining one of the great benefits of the patent system. Under your logic, if you bequeathed a patent to your child upon your death, your child would become "a patent troll" because they didn't produce their own goods or services based on the patent they inherited form you. That's wrong. I celebrate the fact that people can hold patents without being manufacturers, whereas you deride it.

    Your points are valid, but let's test your actual position.

    Do you support Apple hanging onto Lightning, or would you prefer that they fully move all of their products to USB-C?

    I fail to see how the patent system "encourages" innovation when it clearly can be used to block the sale of products that supposedly use certain patents. Tons and tons of money is lost just battling patents when that same money and energy could be used moving the world forward. So yes, I agree that companies that hold patents solely to profit from them alone are trolls. They are not contributing to the world in any way.

    Note, patent trolls are not the same as the inventors of those patents. The inventors are contributing to the world. Patent trolls are just trying to profit from the inventors' hard work.
    fotoformatrob53killroyradarthekatwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 6 of 29
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 3,057member
    There is no requirement under the patent system that the patent inventor needs to also be the manufacturer who produces the goods based on his patent. That is a myth. The whole patent system encourages innovation by allowing people who don't manufacture things to get rewarded from designing things without having to manufacture them. You don't need to build mousetraps to be able to patent one. You aren't a "troll" just because you are an inventor and not a manufacturer. 

    By saying, as you do, Appelsauce007, that only companies big enough to manufacture their patents are legitimate patent holders, you are undermining one of the great benefits of the patent system. Under your logic, if you bequeathed a patent to your child upon your death, your child would become "a patent troll" because they didn't produce their own goods or services based on the patent they inherited form you. That's wrong. I celebrate the fact that people can hold patents without being manufacturers, whereas you deride it.

    Your points are valid, but let's test your actual position.

    Do you support Apple hanging onto Lightning, or would you prefer that they fully move all of their products to USB-C?

    I fail to see how the patent system "encourages" innovation when it clearly can be used to block the sale of products that supposedly use certain patents. Tons and tons of money is lost just battling patents when that same money and energy could be used moving the world forward. So yes, I agree that companies that hold patents solely to profit from them alone are trolls. They are not contributing to the world in any way.

    Note, patent trolls are not the same as the inventors of those patents. The inventors are contributing to the world. Patent trolls are just trying to profit from the inventors' hard work.
    Thank you for the opening compliment. Civility counts for a lot in life. I'll try to be as civil in return.

    In your closing paragraph you said that inventors themselves are not trolls. That's great, but you failed to answer my question above which was: what happens when an inventor bequeaths his patent to an heir? Does the heir become a patent troll? After all, the heir didn't invent anything. Or what happens if the inventor willingly sells his patent to a non-manufacturing entity? Does the new owner of the patent become a "patent troll"? Basically you and Applesauce007 are saying that anyone who isn't the original inventor or a big manufacturer is automatically a "patent troll." Is it immoral for a legitimate inventor to sell his patent to some company that you call a "patent troll company"? There are so many questions like this - do you have any answers? How exactly would you stop "legitimate patent owners" from selling their patents to companies that you deem to be "patent troll companies"? Who is going to be the judge of which owners are legitimate buyers of patents and which ones are not?

    If I purchase a copyright from some author, does that make me a "copyright troll"? Or if I purchase a trademark from the creator of the trademark, am I a "trademark troll"? Why can't I own something and retain the world's respect without being the original property creator?

    As for your question about Lightning vs USB-C, I don't see any connection to these patent issues. And the truth is that I don't care what Apple does with its Lightning connectors, as long as all patents are honoured and paid for when used. What do you want me to say about Lightning vs USB-C? The only position that I have is that patents and copyrights and trademarks should all be "property," just like any other property that anyone can own. You can buy them from, or sell them to, anyone you want. Patents are no different from cars, homes or jewelry. Anyone can own them. And anyone can sell them to whomever they want.

    When you said "I fail to see how the patent system "encourages" innovation when it clearly can be used to block the sale of products that supposedly use certain patents" I don't even know where to begin. The company that you call the "patent troll" is trying to get paid for patent that it owns, and is using the threat of "blocking sales" to force the patent violator to get paid. Surely you aren't suggesting that Apple shouldn't be required to pay up for patents that it's using without paying for them. The courts are the final arbiter for determining patent violations... do you have any problem with that? What exactly is wrong with the patent system in your opinion? In my opinion it is working exactly as intended and it's a fine system. I'm a very happy person with the current state of patent law... what changes to the law do you want to see?
    gatorguymuthuk_vanalingam13485FileMakerFeller
  • Reply 7 of 29
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,009member
    Let's look at who this NPE really is.

    "Sonrai Memory Limited was set up on Thursday the 22nd of August 2019. Their current partial address is Dublin, and the company status is Normal. The company's current directors have been the director of 486 other Irish companies between them; 113 of which are now closed. Sonrai Memory Limited has 4 shareholders."
    Principal Activity: Other Information Technology and Computer Service Activities
    Mr Padian is a Company Director of Sonraí Memory Limited since 2019 and a listed Director of 23 other companies.
    https://www.solocheck.ie/Irish-Company/Sonrai-Memory-Limited-655575
    https://www.vision-net.ie/Company-Info/Sonrai-Memory-Limited-655575

    web search: Sonraí Memory Limited has expanded its first litigation campaign, launched in February 2021 over patents received from either Microchip Technology or HP Enterprise (HPE), with a suit against Lenovo ( Motorola Mobility) ( 6:22-cv-00029) in the Western District of Texas.

    When I see this documented information about this "company" I see a typical non-practicing entity. This group of people simply buy up, in this case, patents and pursue legal activity against real companies who make and sell physical products. Apple is just one company in a long line of companies this NPE is going after. 

    I look at people who feel this type of company is valid as someone who only cares about making money, no matter how they do it. If this company had even one employee who actually designed something similar to these patents (other than a technique of suing other companies) I could see a valid reason for this lawsuit. This isn't the case. This company bought up patents developed by real companies involved in the technology these patents were created for and are simply using processes not disallowed by the  USPTO or US law. Apple, on the other hand, bought patents from Intel, that Intel weren't using anymore, to protect themselves from NPE (and patent trolls) and to help them develop their own cellular products for potential and future use. Sonrai will never actually produce any products and has no desire to do so. They are simply grabbing patents to stifle production, forcing companies that could use these patents to pay them, supporting their bogus company. 
    killroydanoxwilliamlondonwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 8 of 29
    Can someone explain how a patent suit even begins? I’m assuming apple has some patent for their chip, and the opposing company also has their own which conflicts. 

    Is there a problem in how our system is issuing patents? Are they not validated ahead of time to avoid infringement? 
    killroywatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 29
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,009member
    Can someone explain how a patent suit even begins? I’m assuming apple has some patent for their chip, and the opposing company also has their own which conflicts. 

    Is there a problem in how our system is issuing patents? Are they not validated ahead of time to avoid infringement? 
    The USPTO is a joke. That's the main reason. Patents are being granted on very general ideas. A patent holder can make all kinds of statements saying their patent is similar to another patent and juries filled with non technical people make the judgment. It's a total joke. As for the other company in this lawsuit, they do not make any products, I doubt they ever have. The current incarnation of this company simply buys patents and uses them against companies who actually build things. This is just one of the problems with the USPTO. It was created to help inventors protect their investment in unique products. This has been abused for decades. 

    https://patft.uspto.gov/netahtml/PTO/srchnum.htm

    Here's what the first patent says:
    A multiprocessing system comprising: multiple processors mounted on a single die; and multiple operating systems residing in a memory connected to said multiple processors, wherein each of said multiple processors executes an operating system of said multiple operating systems, and two or more of said multiple processors are capable of simultaneously executing two or more operating systems of said multiple operating systems. 

    Every single computer does this and has done this practically since computers were developed. This patent was developed in the Silicon Valley of CA. HP was and is a computer company but I have to wonder why they sold this particular patent when it could be a part of every other patent HP ever created. Patents almost always refer to other patents so I have to wonder if HP felt this patent was out of date and no longer viable in any product, being superseded by other patents. 

    edit: One more thing. Apple has been making computerized devices since the 1980s and if HP had thought Apple was infringing on this patent HP would have sued Apple. If they did, Apple would have changed how they designed computers to not infringe this patent and Sonrai would have no reason to sue Apple. 

    Your first post. Would you mind telling us what your old name was? If this is actually the first time you've visited AI, welcome.
    edited July 17 radarthekatwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 10 of 29
    There is nothing illegal with any company that "exhibits patent-troll like behaviour." Designating them with the demeaning word "trolls" shows bias. In a free market there are many speculative ways to make money, and obtaining patents and testing them in court is a legal and valid way to make money. Apple itself probably buys patents by buying companies that own patents, which is also a form of speculating in the patent trade. It's actually smart behaviour. I've never seen AppleInsider criticize Apple for buying companies with patents, for the patents. What's the difference? Why the double standard?

    When Apple bought 17,000 patents from Intel two years ago, AppleInsider didn't call Apple a "troll" but rather suggested it was smart of Apple to purchase them.

    https://appleinsider.com/articles/19/07/25/apple-buys-intel-4g-and-5g-modem-patent-portfolio-for-1-billion <--

    17,000. so as to develops its own system, as we can see, not ot be a troll
    watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 11 of 29
    The suit needs first show SK Hynix NAND Flash die violated patents 'before' it can sue Apple. This is like you buy a stolen item and are accused as a stealer. The police needs first to show the item was stolen. 
    killroywatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 29
    killroykillroy Posts: 216member
    rob53 said:
    Can someone explain how a patent suit even begins? I’m assuming apple has some patent for their chip, and the opposing company also has their own which conflicts. 

    Is there a problem in how our system is issuing patents? Are they not validated ahead of time to avoid infringement? 
    The USPTO is a joke. That's the main reason. Patents are being granted on very general ideas. A patent holder can make all kinds of statements saying their patent is similar to another patent and juries filled with non technical people make the judgment. It's a total joke. As for the other company in this lawsuit, they do not make any products, I doubt they ever have. The current incarnation of this company simply buys patents and uses them against companies who actually build things. This is just one of the problems with the USPTO. It was created to help inventors protect their investment in unique products. This has been abused for decades. 

    https://patft.uspto.gov/netahtml/PTO/srchnum.htm

    Here's what the first patent says:
    A multiprocessing system comprising: multiple processors mounted on a single die; and multiple operating systems residing in a memory connected to said multiple processors, wherein each of said multiple processors executes an operating system of said multiple operating systems, and two or more of said multiple processors are capable of simultaneously executing two or more operating systems of said multiple operating systems. 

    Every single computer does this and has done this practically since computers were developed. This patent was developed in the Silicon Valley of CA. HP was and is a computer company but I have to wonder why they sold this particular patent when it could be a part of every other patent HP ever created. Patents almost always refer to other patents so I have to wonder if HP felt this patent was out of date and no longer viable in any product, being superseded by other patents. 

    edit: One more thing. Apple has been making computerized devices since the 1980s and if HP had thought Apple was infringing on this patent HP would have sued Apple. If they did, Apple would have changed how they designed computers to not infringe this patent and Sonrai would have no reason to sue Apple. 

    Your first post. Would you mind telling us what your old name was? If this is actually the first time you've visited AI, welcome.

    Lets not forget Apple chips are ARM based. I would think ARM would have a lot to say about this.
    edited July 17 watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 13 of 29
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 3,526moderator
    There is no requirement under the patent system that the patent inventor needs to also be the manufacturer who produces the goods based on his patent. That is a myth. The whole patent system encourages innovation by allowing people who don't manufacture things to get rewarded from designing things without having to manufacture them. You don't need to build mousetraps to be able to patent one. You aren't a "troll" just because you are an inventor and not a manufacturer. 

    By saying, as you do, Appelsauce007, that only companies big enough to manufacture their patents are legitimate patent holders, you are undermining one of the great benefits of the patent system. Under your logic, if you bequeathed a patent to your child upon your death, your child would become "a patent troll" because they didn't produce their own goods or services based on the patent they inherited form you. That's wrong. I celebrate the fact that people can hold patents without being manufacturers, whereas you deride it.

    Your points are valid, but let's test your actual position.

    Do you support Apple hanging onto Lightning, or would you prefer that they fully move all of their products to USB-C?

    I fail to see how the patent system "encourages" innovation when it clearly can be used to block the sale of products that supposedly use certain patents. Tons and tons of money is lost just battling patents when that same money and energy could be used moving the world forward. So yes, I agree that companies that hold patents solely to profit from them alone are trolls. They are not contributing to the world in any way.

    Note, patent trolls are not the same as the inventors of those patents. The inventors are contributing to the world. Patent trolls are just trying to profit from the inventors' hard work.
    Thank you for the opening compliment. Civility counts for a lot in life. I'll try to be as civil in return.

    In your closing paragraph you said that inventors themselves are not trolls. That's great, but you failed to answer my question above which was: what happens when an inventor bequeaths his patent to an heir? Does the heir become a patent troll? After all, the heir didn't invent anything. Or what happens if the inventor willingly sells his patent to a non-manufacturing entity? Does the new owner of the patent become a "patent troll"? Basically you and Applesauce007 are saying that anyone who isn't the original inventor or a big manufacturer is automatically a "patent troll." Is it immoral for a legitimate inventor to sell his patent to some company that you call a "patent troll company"? There are so many questions like this - do you have any answers? How exactly would you stop "legitimate patent owners" from selling their patents to companies that you deem to be "patent troll companies"? Who is going to be the judge of which owners are legitimate buyers of patents and which ones are not?

    If I purchase a copyright from some author, does that make me a "copyright troll"? Or if I purchase a trademark from the creator of the trademark, am I a "trademark troll"? Why can't I own something and retain the world's respect without being the original property creator?

    As for your question about Lightning vs USB-C, I don't see any connection to these patent issues. And the truth is that I don't care what Apple does with its Lightning connectors, as long as all patents are honoured and paid for when used. What do you want me to say about Lightning vs USB-C? The only position that I have is that patents and copyrights and trademarks should all be "property," just like any other property that anyone can own. You can buy them from, or sell them to, anyone you want. Patents are no different from cars, homes or jewelry. Anyone can own them. And anyone can sell them to whomever they want.

    When you said "I fail to see how the patent system "encourages" innovation when it clearly can be used to block the sale of products that supposedly use certain patents" I don't even know where to begin. The company that you call the "patent troll" is trying to get paid for patent that it owns, and is using the threat of "blocking sales" to force the patent violator to get paid. Surely you aren't suggesting that Apple shouldn't be required to pay up for patents that it's using without paying for them. The courts are the final arbiter for determining patent violations... do you have any problem with that? What exactly is wrong with the patent system in your opinion? In my opinion it is working exactly as intended and it's a fine system. I'm a very happy person with the current state of patent law... what changes to the law do you want to see?

    I've grappled with the dichotomy presented by the need to protect intellectual property versus the scourge that the non-practicing entity lawsuits represent.  

    Perhaps the answer is to limit the royalties that can be demanded from patents that are not being applied (non-practicing) versus those that are applied in some product or service.  This would give greater protection and rewards to those who own patents and are using the patented technology in their products, because damage from infringement is higher versus damage to a non-practicing patent holder.  If you've gone through the expense of utilizing a patented process or mechanism, then you should be compensated greater when someone infringes that patent.  But if you haven't, and therefore also haven't brought a new product or service to market that allows society to benefit from the invention, then perhaps you shouldn't receive the same compensation for infringement. 

    There's perhaps a bit of precedent here in the  FRAND royalty calculations for patents that are considered standards essential.  The whole notion of SEP is that there's a greater good to society to allow multiple parties to utilize an invention as part of a standard and therefore it should be affordable for all to utilize the patented invention. Same here.  Patented inventions that are sat upon don't benefit society, so there should be incentive to get those inventions into use.  

    To give time for a new patent holder to develop products and services around a patented invention, perhaps the first few years after the patent is granted, it can be exempt from the rules I'm suggesting here.  The current status quo would remain in effect.  But after, say, three years, if you haven't shown that the patent is being developed into a product or service, then licensing limitations go into effect so that the amount you may charge for your invention will be limited, ala FRAND-type pricing guidelines.  So, if you don't intend to utilize a patented invention, either accept the lower royalty rates so that others can utilize it, or sell the patent to a company that will utilize it and therefore retain full royalty and infringement power over it.

    killroymuthuk_vanalingamwatto_cobrajony0FileMakerFeller
  • Reply 14 of 29
    geekmeegeekmee Posts: 587member
    All this arm chair quarterbacking…
    I am sure Apple expects this under 
    ‘The cost of doing business.’
    edited July 17
  • Reply 15 of 29
    docbburkdocbburk Posts: 95member
    There is nothing illegal with any company that "exhibits patent-troll like behaviour." Designating them with the demeaning word "trolls" shows bias. In a free market there are many speculative ways to make money, and obtaining patents and testing them in court is a legal and valid way to make money. Apple itself probably buys patents by buying companies that own patents, which is also a form of speculating in the patent trade. It's actually smart behaviour. I've never seen AppleInsider criticize Apple for buying companies with patents, for the patents. What's the difference? Why the double standard?

    When Apple bought 17,000 patents from Intel two years ago, AppleInsider didn't call Apple a "troll" but rather suggested it was smart of Apple to purchase them.

    https://appleinsider.com/articles/19/07/25/apple-buys-intel-4g-and-5g-modem-patent-portfolio-for-1-billion <--

    Sounds like something that someone who either is involved in this kind of "work" or knows someone who is.  This is especially highlighted by the way you phrase apples purchase of Intel's modem unit as merely a patent purchase. Considering this acquisition was to improve their own efforts to actually design and produce their own modems, this is nothing like what patent trolls do. Are you in the legal field or politics? Patent trolls are parasites, plain and simple. 
    geekmeedanoxwilliamlondonwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 16 of 29
    geekmeegeekmee Posts: 587member
    True Docbburk, it's all revealed under ‘What is their motive?’
    edited July 17 watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 17 of 29
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 3,057member
    There is no requirement under the patent system that the patent inventor needs to also be the manufacturer who produces the goods based on his patent. That is a myth. The whole patent system encourages innovation by allowing people who don't manufacture things to get rewarded from designing things without having to manufacture them. You don't need to build mousetraps to be able to patent one. You aren't a "troll" just because you are an inventor and not a manufacturer. 

    By saying, as you do, Appelsauce007, that only companies big enough to manufacture their patents are legitimate patent holders, you are undermining one of the great benefits of the patent system. Under your logic, if you bequeathed a patent to your child upon your death, your child would become "a patent troll" because they didn't produce their own goods or services based on the patent they inherited form you. That's wrong. I celebrate the fact that people can hold patents without being manufacturers, whereas you deride it.

    Your points are valid, but let's test your actual position.

    Do you support Apple hanging onto Lightning, or would you prefer that they fully move all of their products to USB-C?

    I fail to see how the patent system "encourages" innovation when it clearly can be used to block the sale of products that supposedly use certain patents. Tons and tons of money is lost just battling patents when that same money and energy could be used moving the world forward. So yes, I agree that companies that hold patents solely to profit from them alone are trolls. They are not contributing to the world in any way.

    Note, patent trolls are not the same as the inventors of those patents. The inventors are contributing to the world. Patent trolls are just trying to profit from the inventors' hard work.
    Thank you for the opening compliment. Civility counts for a lot in life. I'll try to be as civil in return.

    In your closing paragraph you said that inventors themselves are not trolls. That's great, but you failed to answer my question above which was: what happens when an inventor bequeaths his patent to an heir? Does the heir become a patent troll? After all, the heir didn't invent anything. Or what happens if the inventor willingly sells his patent to a non-manufacturing entity? Does the new owner of the patent become a "patent troll"? Basically you and Applesauce007 are saying that anyone who isn't the original inventor or a big manufacturer is automatically a "patent troll." Is it immoral for a legitimate inventor to sell his patent to some company that you call a "patent troll company"? There are so many questions like this - do you have any answers? How exactly would you stop "legitimate patent owners" from selling their patents to companies that you deem to be "patent troll companies"? Who is going to be the judge of which owners are legitimate buyers of patents and which ones are not?

    If I purchase a copyright from some author, does that make me a "copyright troll"? Or if I purchase a trademark from the creator of the trademark, am I a "trademark troll"? Why can't I own something and retain the world's respect without being the original property creator?

    As for your question about Lightning vs USB-C, I don't see any connection to these patent issues. And the truth is that I don't care what Apple does with its Lightning connectors, as long as all patents are honoured and paid for when used. What do you want me to say about Lightning vs USB-C? The only position that I have is that patents and copyrights and trademarks should all be "property," just like any other property that anyone can own. You can buy them from, or sell them to, anyone you want. Patents are no different from cars, homes or jewelry. Anyone can own them. And anyone can sell them to whomever they want.

    When you said "I fail to see how the patent system "encourages" innovation when it clearly can be used to block the sale of products that supposedly use certain patents" I don't even know where to begin. The company that you call the "patent troll" is trying to get paid for patent that it owns, and is using the threat of "blocking sales" to force the patent violator to get paid. Surely you aren't suggesting that Apple shouldn't be required to pay up for patents that it's using without paying for them. The courts are the final arbiter for determining patent violations... do you have any problem with that? What exactly is wrong with the patent system in your opinion? In my opinion it is working exactly as intended and it's a fine system. I'm a very happy person with the current state of patent law... what changes to the law do you want to see?

    I've grappled with the dichotomy presented by the need to protect intellectual property versus the scourge that the non-practicing entity lawsuits represent.  

    Perhaps the answer is to limit the royalties that can be demanded from patents that are not being applied (non-practicing) versus those that are applied in some product or service.  This would give greater protection and rewards to those who own patents and are using the patented technology in their products, because damage from infringement is higher versus damage to a non-practicing patent holder.  If you've gone through the expense of utilizing a patented process or mechanism, then you should be compensated greater when someone infringes that patent.  But if you haven't, and therefore also haven't brought a new product or service to market that allows society to benefit from the invention, then perhaps you shouldn't receive the same compensation for infringement. 

    There's perhaps a bit of precedent here in the  FRAND royalty calculations for patents that are considered standards essential.  The whole notion of SEP is that there's a greater good to society to allow multiple parties to utilize an invention as part of a standard and therefore it should be affordable for all to utilize the patented invention. Same here.  Patented inventions that are sat upon don't benefit society, so there should be incentive to get those inventions into use.  

    To give time for a new patent holder to develop products and services around a patented invention, perhaps the first few years after the patent is granted, it can be exempt from the rules I'm suggesting here.  The current status quo would remain in effect.  But after, say, three years, if you haven't shown that the patent is being developed into a product or service, then licensing limitations go into effect so that the amount you may charge for your invention will be limited, ala FRAND-type pricing guidelines.  So, if you don't intend to utilize a patented invention, either accept the lower royalty rates so that others can utilize it, or sell the patent to a company that will utilize it and therefore retain full royalty and infringement power over it.

    I'm glad that you admit you are struggling to find rules that work for you. But here's your problem: you say, "If you've gone through the expense of utilizing a patented process or mechanism, then you should be compensated greater when someone infringes that patent." This implies that the compensation is NOT to be determined by any agreement between the patent holder and the patent user, but by some third party whom you do not identify. Do you want the government or the courts determining how much a patent is "worth". Apparently you don't like the idea of a free market deciding what something is worth.

    How about people who hold and own copyrights for books or music when they aren't aren't the original compose of the work. Do you want them to be compensated "less" because they didn't write the material? That's the same idea as making patent holders receive less money if they aren't the original creator or a manufacturer.

    I just don't like it when people say that the free market isn't good enough, and that someone (never identified by the arguers) should be determining what everything is "worth."
    FileMakerFeller
  • Reply 18 of 29
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 3,057member
    docbburk said:
    There is nothing illegal with any company that "exhibits patent-troll like behaviour." Designating them with the demeaning word "trolls" shows bias. In a free market there are many speculative ways to make money, and obtaining patents and testing them in court is a legal and valid way to make money. Apple itself probably buys patents by buying companies that own patents, which is also a form of speculating in the patent trade. It's actually smart behaviour. I've never seen AppleInsider criticize Apple for buying companies with patents, for the patents. What's the difference? Why the double standard?

    When Apple bought 17,000 patents from Intel two years ago, AppleInsider didn't call Apple a "troll" but rather suggested it was smart of Apple to purchase them.

    https://appleinsider.com/articles/19/07/25/apple-buys-intel-4g-and-5g-modem-patent-portfolio-for-1-billion <--

    Sounds like something that someone who either is involved in this kind of "work" or knows someone who is.  This is especially highlighted by the way you phrase apples purchase of Intel's modem unit as merely a patent purchase. Considering this acquisition was to improve their own efforts to actually design and produce their own modems, this is nothing like what patent trolls do. Are you in the legal field or politics? Patent trolls are parasites, plain and simple. 
    You are wrong on both counts. I'm just a person who believes in free enterprise and letting the market decide, while most people on this forum seem to think there are better ways to run American than letting the people decide for themselves how much they should pay for what they want to license or purchase. Even the moderator Radarthekat wants some third party to step in and dictate how much a person's patent should be "worth." But he doesn't say who should determine a patent's value. The courts? Unelected government bureaucrats? 

    And you said "the way I phrased Apples' purchase 'as merely a patent purchase' ". I said no such thing. Stop putting words in my mouth to support your ideas.

    You said, "Considering this acquisition was to improve their own efforts to actually design and produce their own modems". How do you know that Apple isn't collecting money from these new patents from other companies products? Do you actually know that Apple isn't charging anyone, or are you just making up facts to suit your claims? Apple doesn't have any modems yet, and nobody knows for sure if they will, and yet you really believe Apple won't collect money from other companies for using its patents that it bought from Intel? By the definitions most people are giving today, if Apple doesn't make a modem, then Apple would be a "patent troll" if it tried to collect money from the patents it bought from Intel.
  • Reply 19 of 29
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 3,057member
    lorca2770 said:
    There is nothing illegal with any company that "exhibits patent-troll like behaviour." Designating them with the demeaning word "trolls" shows bias. In a free market there are many speculative ways to make money, and obtaining patents and testing them in court is a legal and valid way to make money. Apple itself probably buys patents by buying companies that own patents, which is also a form of speculating in the patent trade. It's actually smart behaviour. I've never seen AppleInsider criticize Apple for buying companies with patents, for the patents. What's the difference? Why the double standard?

    When Apple bought 17,000 patents from Intel two years ago, AppleInsider didn't call Apple a "troll" but rather suggested it was smart of Apple to purchase them.

    https://appleinsider.com/articles/19/07/25/apple-buys-intel-4g-and-5g-modem-patent-portfolio-for-1-billion <--

    17,000. so as to develops its own system, as we can see, not ot be a troll
    So you admit that Apple doesn't have its own modems yet. So we agree that Apple has purchased modem patents from Intel without building anything yet. Are you certain that Apple isn't currently charging anyone for using the patents that it bought from Intel? Would you agree that if Apple was charging for the use of modem patents that it owns, while Apple isn't yet building any modems itself, that this would make Apple a "patent troll" which you clearly despise?
  • Reply 20 of 29
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,009member
    killroy said:
    rob53 said:
    Can someone explain how a patent suit even begins? I’m assuming apple has some patent for their chip, and the opposing company also has their own which conflicts. 

    Is there a problem in how our system is issuing patents? Are they not validated ahead of time to avoid infringement? 
    The USPTO is a joke. That's the main reason. Patents are being granted on very general ideas. A patent holder can make all kinds of statements saying their patent is similar to another patent and juries filled with non technical people make the judgment. It's a total joke. As for the other company in this lawsuit, they do not make any products, I doubt they ever have. The current incarnation of this company simply buys patents and uses them against companies who actually build things. This is just one of the problems with the USPTO. It was created to help inventors protect their investment in unique products. This has been abused for decades. 

    https://patft.uspto.gov/netahtml/PTO/srchnum.htm

    Here's what the first patent says:
    A multiprocessing system comprising: multiple processors mounted on a single die; and multiple operating systems residing in a memory connected to said multiple processors, wherein each of said multiple processors executes an operating system of said multiple operating systems, and two or more of said multiple processors are capable of simultaneously executing two or more operating systems of said multiple operating systems. 

    Every single computer does this and has done this practically since computers were developed. This patent was developed in the Silicon Valley of CA. HP was and is a computer company but I have to wonder why they sold this particular patent when it could be a part of every other patent HP ever created. Patents almost always refer to other patents so I have to wonder if HP felt this patent was out of date and no longer viable in any product, being superseded by other patents. 

    edit: One more thing. Apple has been making computerized devices since the 1980s and if HP had thought Apple was infringing on this patent HP would have sued Apple. If they did, Apple would have changed how they designed computers to not infringe this patent and Sonrai would have no reason to sue Apple. 

    Your first post. Would you mind telling us what your old name was? If this is actually the first time you've visited AI, welcome.

    Lets not forget Apple chips are ARM based. I would think ARM would have a lot to say about this.
    This patent doesn't have anything to do with a specific manufacturer, it has all to do with multiprocessors. I did a quick search of the first page and neither intel or arm were mentioned. I also downloaded the actual patent and non of the artwork mentions any company.
    watto_cobra
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