We reported a couple of days back of Apple getting its comeuppance with rivals Motorola winning a preliminary injunction against the Cupertino company in Germany – threatening sales of iOS devices throughout Deutschland.
The complaint was focused around two European Motorola patents; EP 1010336 (B1), regarding a method of performing a countdown function for a mobile-originated transfer for radio systems, as well as EP 0847654 (B1), related to a page status syncing system/method.
Just when you though that Apple may be on the receiving end of the patent infringement sword though, it turns out that Tim Cook and his merry (law) men may be able to wriggle themselves out of the situation. Having consulted a number of German lawyers, FOSS Patent’s own Florian Mueller has indicated that Apple may be awarded a temporary suspension of the injunction.
Mueller reckons that the suspension is likely to be put in place to enable the Cupertino company to organize its defense. It is suspected that Apple’s German lawyers may have strategically implicated the default suspension by failing to appear in court, although that for now remains unconfirmed.
Unusually – and rather refreshingly, both parties were available to comment at the time of the initial injunction, with Motorola’s “We will continue to assert ourselves in the protection of these [patent] assets” spiel bearing all the hallmarks of those Apple outbursts seen on a regular basis.
Apple’s failure to appear in court does come in at a hefty price. If the fruit company successfully manages to get the injunction suspended, it will have to secure bail with the court, but then again, given Apple’s expansive wallet capacity, one would suspect that - in true Steve Jobs fashion – principle will prioritize over price.
Unless you’re a patent specialist such as Mueller, it’s almost impossible to keep track of the suing and counter-suing currently taking place in the world of mobile technologies. This infographic – though a few months behind the times – gives a rough idea as to who’s suing who, for those interested.
The patent-suit culture may seem petty and trivial, and admittedly some cases are. However, when one company develops prospective game-changing features advantageous over rivals, it’s hardly surprising that many opt to run to the judges in protest when it appears others have replicated those innovations.
We eagerly await chapter three in the 2011 installment of Apple Vs. Motorola. Oh yes, it happened last year, too!