HTC Already Finished with Workaround for Patent Issue

Just a day after the U.S. International Trade Commission ruled that several HTC devices violate an Apple patent and scheduled an import ban on those devices to take effect in April, Bloomberg reported that HTC has already completed development on a workaround that it says will allow the company to avoid the ban.

HTC Corp. has already completed a technical workaround to skirt a U.S. agency ruling that found a user interface in some handsets infringed an Apple Inc. patent.

“It’s actually quite rarely used,” HTC Chief Executive Officer Peter Chou said of the feature. The company will continue to work with Google Inc. to “protect ourselves,” Chou said in a media briefing at the company’s Taoyuan, Taiwan headquarters today.

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Google's Andy Rubin was also present at today's event to stand by his company's hardware partner, with Rubin noting that the HTC case is just part of the early stages of the patent battle involving a number of smartphone companies and which will take several years to play out. The Wall Street Journal has more on Rubin's comments:

"The majority of these patents [in Apple's complaint against HTC] were claimed in the operating system itself, but actually in this case what was allowed...is some user interface feature of an application, not the operating system itself, so that's why I'm very optimistic in basically my desire to achieve patent peace on the overall platform," Mr. Rubin said.

HTC had noted immediately after the ITC decision was announced on Monday that the company had already "created alternate solutions" for the data tapping user interface design that was ruled to infringe upon Apple's patents, but it now appears that the HTC will be able to easily transition to what it believes is a non-infringing alternative.

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Top Rated Comments

benthewraith Avatar
162 months ago
So of all the patents Apple accused HTC of supposedly infringing on, it was solely the auto-detect phone number application that the ITC claimed was a valid violation? Meanwhile, most of the cases of the Apple v. Samsung battle have been thrown out and the one that stuck was related to a gallery app (and the ban in Australia)?

That's a lot of rich lawyers and the march continues.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rmwebs Avatar
162 months ago


If it was that fast and easy, why not do that in the first place and avoid the cost of defending that part of the suit?

Probably weren't aware it was a patent violation, or wanted to see if they could get away with it. Its not like its cost them much to try.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rmwebs Avatar
162 months ago
Android is a copied OS, this is bound to end in Google tears.

Do you really want to start that moronic debate again? Refer to one of the other 1000+ patent threads on MacRumors if you're one of those people who think Android is a rip off. Otherwise, shut it and move on.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Oletros Avatar
162 months ago
Good.

Maybe Samsung can start doing the same.

Why? What are infringing?
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
PeterQVenkman Avatar
162 months ago
HTC already has a work around, so in this case, the lawyers on both sides really did win. Nothing changes but they get paid a ton of money.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rtdunham Avatar
162 months ago
If it was that fast and easy, why not do that in the first place and avoid the cost of defending that part of the suit?
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)