HTC bid to ban iPhone and iPod to be probed

13 Jun 2010

The International Trade Commission is to investigate allegations made by HTC that Apple infringes its technology and as a result ban the US sale and import of iPhones, iPads and iPods.

In a complaint filed in May, HTC claimed that Apple infringed five of its patents, in particular relating to phone directory hardware and software and power management technology.

It asked the International Trade Commission to ban imports of Apple’s products. The move followed on the heels of Apple suing HTC for the same reasons.

The suit taken by Apple is being seen as an indirect but strategic attack on Google, whose Android operating system is powering top selling devices from HTC, Samsung, LG, Motorola and Sony Ericsson.

Speaking to recently, US patent investor Erich Spangenberg who has fought many similar patent battles said: “Apple thought the iPhone would have a 10-year life and are disappointed other people are muscling in on the touchscreen smartphone business.

“I think it’s curious they’re going after HTC when really it is a fight about Google. Either way, the iPhone was a significant investment for Apple and they’re right to protect it,” Spangenberg said.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years