Apple Threatened With Patent War From HTC

Ah the legal battleground that is the patent infringement arena, there are so many paten infringement fights going on in the mobile space it is sometimes quite difficult to keep track of them all; however when Apple and HTC are involved it does sometimes make interesting reading.

As most are probably aware recently Apple won a US ITC complaint where HTC was found to be guilty of infringing two Apple patents, the result of which HTC is to appeal that ruling.

And now according to a report by the BBC, Peter Chou, the chief exec of HTC has said that HTC will win the appeal and apparently “Threatens Apple with a raft of patents that HTC recently acquired with S3 Graphics.”

In an exclusive interview with the BBC, the HTC chief executive says that the US International Trade Commission panel will overturn their ruling in December as just one judge made the ruling, and apparently claims that the senior staff attorney of the ITC has the opinion that HTC hasn’t infringed Apple patents.

Chou says, “We have enough patents to make a stand. We are confident that we have a strong case,” and further says that the “war” over smartphone customers should take place in the market and not by way of the courts.

HTC isn’t the only one Apple lawyers are after though as Apple is also taking on Google and their partners. Florian Mueller, a patent expect believes the lawsuit against HTC targets the very heart of Android’s operating system functionalities and also predicts that there could be a “serious patent problem for the entire Android ecosystem.”

Apparently Chou sends Apple a message by way of a Chinese parable, “We all have been living in this village for a long time, making war. But one day this powerful man came and took all weapons and said these are my powerful weapons. But this war belongs to all and nobody has a right to ask other people to leave.”

Which means according to Chou, “we started making smartphones before him… We don’t want to copy anyone, we want to be a premium product. This world, this market is very big… is for all of us. Nobody should tell other people to leave and we should compete in the market place, let consumers decide… rather than in court.”

Thus it would appear that the patent fight between Apple and HTC is far from over and that HTC is prepared to do whatever is required to make sure they come out the other side unscathed by Apple, so there’s no end to this dispute on the horizon just yet.

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