Apple lawsuit wrap-up for February 2013
March 9, 2013 | 6:24 pm
February 2013 had a cornucopia of Apple lawsuits in all parts of the world, from Australia to Texas to a woman in bed.
♦ The Australian government thinks Apple, Microsoft, and Adobe are charging too much for their products. Now they’ve been summoned to an Australian government inquiry and threatened with legal consequences if they don’t show up. Although Apple did testify in private, they refused to do so in public hearings and that wasn’t good enough.
♦ Although I was irritated when the iPad got updated much faster than expected, suing Apple didn’t cross my mind. That’s not the case in Brazil where the Brazilian Institute of Politics and Law Software (IBDI) may or may not be suing Apple for unfair business practices.
♦ A woman claimed that her iPod exploded and burnt her eye as she was laying in bed listening to music. She wants to be compensated for “pain and suffering, scarring, disability, loss of enjoyment of the usual activities of daily life, medical expenses, mental distress, emotional distress, punitive damages, attorney’s fees and interest.”
♦ In November 2012 a jury in Texas decided that Apple’s FaceTime and iMessage violated four VirnetX’s patents and awarded them $368.2 million in damages. Now a judge has decided that he wants Apple and VirnetX to negotiate with each other and has decided that fining Apple $33,000 every day for the next 45 days is the way to do it.
♦ Apple wants the lawsuit filed in Albany over Siri to be moved to Silicon Valley because most of the witnesses are in California.
♦ In 2011 a lawsuit was filed on behalf of parents whose children bought in-app items without their permission. Apple recently settled the lawsuit by giving iTunes credits and the option of cash refunds for claims over $30.
♦ In Australia the lawsuit between Apple and Samsung has been going on for two years and it’s gotten so complicated that two judges are required.
♦ The patent troll of the month is Elias Data, who has sued Apple over United States Patent 7,113,996, which describes a “Method and system for secured transport and storage of data on a network.” Apple’s Remote Desktop, OS X Server, iCloud, iTunes, and App Store services are the offending products that will be used to get money from Apple.
♦ Express Card Systems has sued Apple over two patents that it claims Apple’s Cards app is infringing upon.
♦ The Department of Justice sued several book publishing companies and Apple accusing them of colluding to raise e-book prices. Macmillan recently settled which leaves Apple as the only one who has not reached a deal to drop the lawsuit.
♦ Judge Koh wants Apple and Samsung to “focus and streamline” their lawsuit to “25 patent claims, or elements of the patents at issue, and 25 accused products.”
♦ The biggest lawsuit was between Greenlight Capital’s David Einhorn and Apple, which was withdrawn before it went to court. Essentially David wanted a judge to stop “Apple from issuing preferred stock without a vote from shareholders first.” Because Apple decided that it wouldn’t vote on the proposal after all, the lawsuit was stopped.