Wed, Jul 20, 2011 - Page 11 News List

Google backs HTC in patent fight with Apple in the US

Staff Writer, with CNA

Following an initial ruling from the US International Trade Commission (ITC), Google Inc yesterday voiced support for HTC Corp’s (宏達電) contention that it had not infringed on any patents used in Apple Inc’s products.

In Friday’s ruling on a patent complaint filed in March by Apple against the world’s No. 5 smartphone maker, the ITC said the Taoyuan-based company had infringed on two of Apple’s 10 patents related to portable electronic devices.

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However, in April, an ITC staff lawyer had recommended that HTC should not be found liable for infringing upon Apple’s patents.

The staff lawyer was acting on behalf of the public as a third party in the case, and the recommendations were not binding.

Google said it was pleased with the ITC staffer’s position against all of Apple’s operating system patent claims, which could hurt its position in the mobile software industry.

CONFIDENCE

“We are confident the Commission will ultimately agree with the ITC staff’s finding that HTC does not violate any of Apple’s patents,” Google said in a statement.

“Litigation that attacks open-source products limits consumer choice, hurts the economy, and discourages innovation,” the search engine giant said.

Some of the patents at issue in the Apple-HTC dispute are the so-called “647” patents, which is part of the core of the Android operating system.

A final determination in the case is due on Dec. 6.

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