It has become quite common in US these days to sue someone by playing ‘patent infringement’. All you need to play this murky game is, have a patent, deploy an attorney who can handle your legal matters in unforeseen events and file a law suit. And, then you can sue someone while playing patent infringement on your patent claims which appears vogue. Recent attack by Lodsys LLC happens on Rovio Mobile Ltd., who developed the most popular game, “Angry Birds” available on many platforms including iPhone, iPad and Android.
Amended complaint by Lodsys LLC
A few months back, Lodsys started suing with Apple App developers and Google developers. As per the latest amended complaint filed by Lodsys in the United States Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, some of the big gaming companies fall under patent infringements which include Atari Interactive, Inc. and Electronic Arts, Inc.
Charges leveled by Lodsys
Rovio Mobile Ltd. has infringed and continues to infringe, directly, indirectly, literally, under the doctrine of equivalents, contributory, and/or through the inducement of others, one or more of the claims of the 565 and 078 patents. Rovio makes, sells, uses, imports, and/or offers to sell infringing applications, including but not limited to Angry Birds for iPhone and Angry Birds for Android, which infringe at least claim 27 of the ’565 patent and claims 1 and 24 of the ’078 patent under 35 U.S.C. § 271.
Lodsys levels patent infringement charges against the users of Apple’s licensed technology and attempts to control the post-sale usage of licensed products and methods by invoking patent law.
Apple strongly denies the infringement charges by stating that Apple is a licensee of four patents from Lodsys portfolio and as per the terms, Apple may grant sub licenses to [easyazon-link asin="0596805780"]Apple App Developers[/easyazon-link]. Apple formally informs Lodsys that it is fully prepared to defend Apple’s license rights and strongly objects chasing of App developers by Lodsys.
Why Lodsys chases App developers but not OS and device manufacturers?
Perhaps App developers are small and not prepared to fight against the legal procedures by investing the time and money. Even though they believe that these infringement charges are improper, they don’t want to defend their cause and are on the submissive end.
On the other hand, it is Lodsys’ strategy to force Operating System Vendors and device manufacturers to go for an expanded license that covers App Developers also.
Voice of the industry
Industry strongly supports the cause of Angry Birds. Some of the loud voices include ‘Article One Network’. ‘Article One’ – the premier prior art locating company in the world with well connected network of researchers spread across the world, has made extensive studies on all four patents of Lodsys. If you are interested in rising your voice against Lodsys in support of [easyazon-link asin="B004U52VPS"]Angry Birds[/easyazon-link] you too can join, ‘Article One’ to know more about the latest developments.
Where this patent claims violation is heading? Is it a 100 meters run or a marathon? Obviously, the current patent conflict takes a marathon.