Another Cellphone Patent Dispute Erupts

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Schaumburg, Ill. - Motorola filed a patent-infringement complaint against Research In Motion (RIM) before the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), asking the ITC to ban the importation of RIM's BlackBerry phones because they infringe on five Motorola's patents.

The filing follows a late-December

patent-infringement complaint

lodged by Nokia against Apple before the ITC. In the filing, announced Dec. 29, Nokia alleged the infringement of seven Nokia patents "in virtually all of their electronics devices (mobile phones, portable music players and computers)," a spokeswoman told TWICE. Nokia is seeking a ban on the importation of the Apple devices. The disputed patents relate to key features in user interfaces as well as camera, antenna and power-management technologies. The ITC has up to 30 days from the Nokia filing to determine if an investigation is warranted.

In Motorola's case, the five disputed patents relate to certain "early-stage innovations developed by Motorola in key technology areas, such as Wi-Fi access, application management, user interface and power management," the company said. "These patented technologies are important to Motorola as they allow for more comprehensive connectivity, a better user experience and lower product costs," Motorola continued.

Not only does Motorola want the ITC to ban the importation of infringing products; it also wants to prohibit sales of infringing products that have already been imported and halt the marketing, advertising, demonstration and warehousing of inventory for distribution and use, the company said.

"In light of RIM's continued unlicensed use of Motorola's patents, RIM's use of delay tactics in our current patent litigation, and RIM's refusal to design out Motorola's proprietary technology, Motorola had no choice but to file a complaint with the ITC to halt RIM's continued infringement," contended Jonathan Meyer, Motorola's intellectual property law senior VP. "Through its early-stage development of the cellular industry and billions of dollars spent on research and development, Motorola has created an industry-leading intellectual property portfolio that is respected by the entire telecommunications industry."


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