The US International Trade Commission (USITC) has decided to investigate patent infringement allegations against Taiwan-based smartphone vendor HTC Corp (宏達電) and several other companies in China, Japan, South Korea, Canada and the US.
A statement posted on the commission’s Web site on Thursday said that the commission has voted to launch a probe into a complaint filed by Creative Technology Ltd of Singapore and California-based Creative Labs Inc on March 24.
According to the commission, the two complainants said that HTC and several other high-tech firms have infringed on a patent owned by the two companies.
The commission said that the patent was allegedly used by the companies in their production of portable electronic devices, such as smartphones, with the ability to play stored media files.
HTC’s subsidiary, HTC America Inc, has also been accused of patent infringement, according to the statement.
Chinese ZTE Corp (中興) and its US unit, China’s Lenovo Group Ltd (聯想) and its US subsidiary, Sony Corp and Sony Mobile Communications Inc of Japan, South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co, US-based Motorola Mobility LLC and Canada’s BlackBerry Ltd were also named in the complaint, according to the statement.
The commission said that the two complainants cited Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, saying that the accused firms violated the law by importing and selling certain portable devices in the US, which infringes upon the patent.
The commission said that the complainants have requested that the commission issue a limited exclusion order and cease-and-desist orders to prevent the import and sales of the products in the US.
Despite the decision to start the investigation, the commission said it has not made any decision on the merits of the case.
The commission’s chief administrative law judge is to assign the case to a commission administrative law judge who would schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing on the accusations.
The judge would issue an initial decision on the case as to whether the accused have violated the act, with the preliminary ruling subject to review by the commission.
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