Apple Faces New Patent Lawsuits from Openwave, Wi-LAN

While much of the focus of patent lawsuits involving Apple has revolved around Samsung and other major smartphone manufacturers in recent weeks, Apple this week faces two new lawsuits from smaller companies seeking to assert their intellectual property claims.

openwave logo
On Wednesday, mobile Internet communications technology firm Openwave Systems announced that it had filed a lawsuit and International Trade Commission (ITC) complaint against Apple and Research in Motion, alleging violation of five different patents across a broad spectrum of applications.

The complaint, filed at the International Trade Commission (ITC) in Washington, DC, requests that the ITC bar the import of smartphones and tablet computers that infringe Openwave patents, including, but not limited to, Apple’s iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod Touch, iPad and iPad 2; and RIM’s Blackberry Curve 9330 and Blackberry PlayBook. Openwave also filed a similar complaint in federal district court in Delaware.

“Openwave invented technologies that became foundational to the mobile Internet. We believe that these large companies should pay us for the use of our technologies, particularly in light of the substantial revenue these companies have earned from devices that use our intellectual property,” said Ken Denman, Chief Executive Officer of Openwave. “Before filing these complaints, we approached both of these companies numerous times in an attempt to negotiate a license of our technology with them and did not receive a substantive response.”

As noted by AllThingsD, Openwave appears to have a small yet fairly strong patent portfolio, suggesting that the company may have a decent chance of winning concessions from Apple and Research in Motion and forcing them into licensing discussions.

wi lan skippen
In other news, Canadian firm Wi-LAN today announced that it has filed suit against Apple and eight other major companies alleging infringement of two patents related to CDMA, HSPA, Wi-Fi, and LTE technologies.

Wi-LAN is generally regarded as a patent troll, having given up on product manufacturing and focused its business solely on attempts to license its intellectual property. The company has not been shy about filing lawsuits alleging infringement of its patents, and has in fact sued Apple several times in the past, most recently in a 2010 complaint targeting over two dozen companies for their implementations of Bluetooth communications technology.

Top Rated Comments

cotak Avatar
133 months ago
If intellectual property law existed when the first man discovered fire we'd be extinct.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mlp mlp Avatar
133 months ago
let's be honest, if wi-lan wants to be taken seriously, they need to get a better logo and that dude needs a stylist
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
srobert Avatar
133 months ago
Hint, hint, nudge, nudge…

;)
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sanford Avatar
133 months ago
PATENT:

A SYSTEM FOR SENDING AND RECEIVING DECODABLE SIGNALS OVER RADIO FREQUENCIES

FULL STOP

Last year they went after after "THE PEOPLE OF ANCIENT CIVILIZATIONS" for "A SYSTEM OF SYMBOLS INTENDED TO CONVEY MEANING, COMMONLY KNOWN AS 'AN ALPHABET.'" But the federal court for the northern district of Texas ruled that dead people could not be compelled to answer a lawsuit in corporeal form.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chagla Avatar
133 months ago
apple sues others -> yes. patents/laws are absolutely necessary, apple has all rights.

others sue apple -> patent laws sucks. patent trolls have nothing better to do.
---
:rolleyes:
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MrCubes Avatar
133 months ago
Wow we got some winning comments in this thread :rolleyes:

Sure Apple may sue over some dumb things sometimes but as a company who constantly has their ideas and technology ripped off I can understand why even if I don't agree with some of the lawsuits. I would hardly call them a patent troll since they actually create things.

Openwave on the other hand does not create things, and in my opinion companies that do not create things should not be allowed to hold patents.

I used to work at Openwave. They are past their heyday now - but only a few years ago they were the leader in mobile software innovation.

Their browser was (arguably) the first to offer the full internet on mass produced mobile devices - back in 2001 (this after being a driving force in the WAP protocol specs that kicked the mobile internet off - and the main implementor).

They pioneered the idea of html+js based rich apps that could be downloaded and run offline (very similar to WebOS) - back in 2002.

They pioneered the idea of a unified messenger app that would choose whether to send over SMS, MMS or email depending on content.

They were one of the first to play with embedding a Linux based OS on mobile devices - in 2001 (many former Openwave devs now work on Android) - although I don't know if they ever brought that to market themselves.

They were pioneers in providing application frameworks for third-party developers to tap into these technologies. This framework supported multi-tasking and suspend/ resume of apps, third-party audio & video codecs, contact and calendar sync and much more.

These are just a few things I recall OTTOMH.

When I was there the majority of the worlds handset manufacturers used Openwave's browser, at least. Many used the application framework. Many more used their messaging.

And that was just the client side. They also had gateways for WAP, MMS, and HTML (which normalised content for device capabilities and compressed images).

Openwave's decline started before the iPhone came on the scene. There were management and leadership issues. That was the climate from which I left.

But I think it's fair to say that the iPhone's success really finished them off. What's ironic is that much (but by no means all) of what finished them off was based on technology they had earlier pioneered!

Now Apple did a lot more. They deserved their success, IMHO. But I can understand why Openwave are feeling a bit put out. I think they have a right to bring up these patents and they are certainly not trolling.

The specific patents almost don't matter. What matters is that they lost out because someone else used much of their intellectual property (plus a lot more, of course) and put them out of the market. Setting aside arguments over who did a better job I think its natural they will use whatever legal tools they have available to seek compensation for that.

Just my thoughts - from someone with loyalties on both sides.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

studio buds family

Beats Studio Buds Debuting Today With Active Noise Cancellation, Stemless Design, and More for $150

Monday June 14, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
We've seen a lot of teasers about the Beats Studio Buds over the past month since they first showed up in Apple's beta software updates, and today they're finally official. The Beats Studio Buds are available to order today in red, white, and black ahead of a June 24 ship date, and they're priced at $149.99. The Studio Buds are the first Beats-branded earbuds to truly compete with AirPods...
airtag in hand

Apple Enhancing AirTags Anti-Stalking Measures With Android App and Shorter Sound Intervals

Thursday June 3, 2021 11:10 am PDT by
Apple is enhancing AirTags security to prevent stalking using the Bluetooth devices, Apple told CNET today. Apple is already sending out over-the-air updates to AirTags that will shorten the amount of time before an unknown AirTag alerts you if it is in your possession. At the current time, AirTags play a sound after three days of being away from their owner. After the update, AirTags will...
maxresdefault

Here's How Apple's New iPhone to iPhone Data Migration Feature Works in iOS 12.4

Tuesday July 23, 2019 1:20 pm PDT by
Apple this week released iOS 12.4, the newest version of iOS 12 available for iPhones and iPads. One of the new features in iOS 12.4 is an updated data migration option that uses device to device transfers rather than relying on iCloud. Apple didn't provide much information on the new data migration feature, so we thought we'd check it out in our latest YouTube video. Subscribe to the ...
youtube apple tv

YouTube Discontinuing 3rd-Generation Apple TV App, AirPlay Still Available

Wednesday February 3, 2021 3:09 pm PST by
YouTube is planning to stop supporting its YouTube app on the third-generation Apple TV models, where YouTube has long been available as a channel option. A 9to5Mac reader received a message about the upcoming app discontinuation, which is set to take place in March.Starting early March, the YouTube app will no longer be available on Apple TV (3rd generation). You can still watch YouTube on...
macos catalina legacy system extension alert

Apple Begins Warning Users That 'Legacy System Extensions' Won't Work With a Future Version of macOS

Wednesday March 25, 2020 9:53 am PDT by
Apple has shared a new support document that indicates kernel extensions — which it calls "legacy system extensions" — will not be compatible with a future version of macOS because they "aren't as secure or reliable as modern alternatives."System extensions are a category of software that works in the background to extend the functionality of your Mac. Some apps install kernel extensions, which...
os x mountain lion macs 16x9 2

Apple Makes OS X Lion and Mountain Lion Free to Download

Wednesday June 30, 2021 12:19 pm PDT by
Apple recently dropped the $19.99 fee for OS X Lion and Mountain Lion, making the older Mac updates free to download, reports Macworld. Apple has kept OS X 10.7 Lion and OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion available for customers who have machines limited to the older software, but until recently, Apple was charging $19.99 to get download codes for the updates. As of last week, these updates no...
airtag precision finding

AirTag Includes U1 Chip for 'Precision Finding' Feature

Tuesday April 20, 2021 12:11 pm PDT by
Apple's long-awaited AirTag was finally unveiled today, and as expected, the small circle-shaped accessories can be attached to items like wallets, keys, and more to allow them to be tracked in the Find My app. As was rumored ahead of release, each AirTag is equipped with a U1 chip, and on devices that also have U1 chips, there's a Precision Finding feature. U1 Ultra Wideband chips are...
iOS 15 General Feature Yellow

Everything New in iOS 15 Beta 6: SharePlay Disabled, Safari Redesigned and More

Tuesday August 17, 2021 2:12 pm PDT by
Apple released the sixth beta of iOS 15 just a week after the fifth beta, but the new update brings some of the most significant tweaks that we've seen to iOS 15 during the beta testing period. Safari Redesign Apple in iOS 15 beta 6 has added a toggle to move the Safari address bar to the top of the interface, which returns Safari to an iOS 14-like design and mitigates all of the Safari...
m1 macbook air

Kuo: Mini-LED MacBook Air Coming in Mid-2022

Thursday July 22, 2021 7:48 pm PDT by
Apple will release a new version of the MacBook Air around the middle of 2022, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in note to investors seen by MacRumors. The upcoming MacBook Air will feature a 13.3-inch mini-LED display, which would make it the second Mac to gain mini-LED technology after the 2021 MacBook Pro, which is rumored to include a mini-LED display and is expected to launch later ...
2016 macbook pro flexgate b

Apple Faces Another Class-Action MacBook Pro ‘Flexgate’ Lawsuit

Thursday August 20, 2020 6:43 am PDT by
Another class-action complaint has been lodged against Apple, which claims that the company was aware of a MacBook Pro design flaw that caused some devices to have backlight display issues (via Apple Insider). The so-called "flexgate" problem was present in some MacBook Pro models manufactured between 2016 and 2017. The problem appears as dark patches along the bottom of the MacBook Pro's...