Patents are confusing. Like you, many of us in the industry try our best to make sense of it all. What we do know is Apple has been taking full advantage of a patent system that’s well overdue of some reform. So the irony that the ultimate patent troll (Apple) has been found of infringing three patents of another patent troll named MobileMedia is hilarious.
MobileMedia owns about 300 technology patents relating to the usage of smartphones and other mobile computing devices — many of which were originally granted to Sony and Nokia. The small media company’s case against Apple started two years ago, and was able to continue because of the iPhone maker’s failure to get the case thrown out.
Now the court has found Apple guilty of infringing on these three MobileMedia patents:
- US 6,070,068 (claims 23, 24) — displaying separate call processing options on the screen (e.g., hold, end call, send, etc.) and staying on the options for a first call if a new call comes in.
- US 6,253,075 (claims 5, 6, 10) — method of rejecting an incoming call on a mobile phone: determining that the incoming call should be rejected and transmitting to a remote transceiver that the call is to be rejected and released from communication with the mobile phone. Also covers notifying the user of the incoming call and allowing the user to reject the call.
- US 6,427,078 (claim 73) — Mobile phone with a camera with a display, processor and user input, and means of transmitting the camera image to another location.
Of course, not much is known when it comes to specifics such as compensation, devices bans, etc. We’ll be sure to keep you posted if we hear of any other information.