Creator of 'Remotizer' Keyless Entry System Sues Apple for Selling HomeKit-Enabled August Smart Lock

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Texas resident Mark Kilbourne has filed a lawsuit against Apple in Southern Texas for selling the HomeKit-enabled August Smart Lock.


The complaint claims that the August Smart Lock infringes upon his patented Remotizer keyless entry system for existing deadbolt locks. For selling the product, Apple is somehow being solely targeted here rather than August.

Kilbourne allegedly submitted a Remotizer app for iPhone for review around September 2014, but Apple said it was unable to continue with the process because it needed the associated hardware to fully assess the app.

"We began review of the app but are not able to continue because we need the associated hardware to fully assess your app features," read Apple's email response, according to the complaint. It appears Kilbourne never complied.

Both the Remotizer and August Smart Lock are electronic systems for remotely opening and closing a preexisting deadbolt lock without a key. Both products allow homeowners to keep their existing exterior door hardware and replace only the interior side of most standard deadbolts.


August's Smart Lock is compatible with Apple's HomeKit platform for locking and unlocking with Apple's Home app and Siri.

Kilbourne is seeking an award of unspecified damages and legal costs, and he wants Apple to stop selling the August Smart Lock, according to the complaint. The lawsuit is rather humorous given that it should probably be targeted at August Smart Lock, so we'll see how far this one goes before getting tossed out.

Top Rated Comments

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39 months ago

"Apple is somehow responsible by association for selling the product"

35 U.S. Code § 271 - Infringement of patent
whoever ('https://www.law.cornell.edu/definitions/uscode.php?width=840&height=800&iframe=true&def_id=35-USC-1321823708-411717092&term_occur=1&term_src=title:35:part:III:chapter:28:section:271') without authority makes, uses, offers to sell, or sells any patented invention, within the United States or imports into the United States any patented invention during the term of the patent therefor, infringes the patent.

You have to notify the company selling the product that it infringes on a patent before you outright sue them. No company can possibly be expected to know if a product they are selling is in violation of a patent.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
39 months ago
"Apple is somehow responsible by association for selling the product"

35 U.S. Code § 271 - Infringement of patent
whoever ('https://www.law.cornell.edu/definitions/uscode.php?width=840&height=800&iframe=true&def_id=35-USC-1321823708-411717092&term_occur=1&term_src=title:35:part:III:chapter:28:section:271') without authority makes, uses, offers to sell, or sells any patented invention, within the United States or imports into the United States any patented invention during the term of the patent therefor, infringes the patent.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
39 months ago
His attorney

Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
39 months ago

"Apple is somehow responsible by association for selling the product"

35 U.S. Code § 271 - Infringement of patent
whoever ('https://www.law.cornell.edu/definitions/uscode.php?width=840&height=800&iframe=true&def_id=35-USC-1321823708-411717092&term_occur=1&term_src=title:35:part:III:chapter:28:section:271') without authority makes, uses, offers to sell, or sells any patented invention, within the United States or imports into the United States any patented invention during the term of the patent therefor, infringes the patent.

I've changed that to: "For selling the product, Apple is somehow being solely targeted here rather than August."
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
39 months ago

I've changed that to: "For selling the product, Apple is somehow being solely targeted here rather than August."

Complaint against august may still be coming, or august may not have sufficient presence in southern district texas to allow it to be sued there.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
39 months ago

You have to notify the company selling the product that it infringes on a patent before you outright sue them.

No, you most certainly do not.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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