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Apple, Dell and Sony pinged for catch-all Bluetooth lawsuit

Could all Bluetooth electronics (except those based on 'Broadcom' licensed technology) be barred from sale?

From Engadget/Inquirer articles:

"APPLE, DELL, SONY AND five other technology companies have been dragged into the huge court case over Bluetooth patents..."

"...So far the foundation, which has generated more than $150 million for the University of Washington, is asking for money damages and a court order barring the sale of products that use the patented technology."

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Raist3681d ago

I don't get it.

A company neither invented nor developped bluetooth, but they still sue other companies for using this technology ? o_O

BenzMoney3681d ago

...the "Washington Research Foundation" holds 4 patents relating to Bluetooth technology that is being used in Apple and Dell computers, as well as Sony devices (such as the Playstation 3). They have only ever licensed the technology to a company called "Broadcom" and so any use of the technology in devices made by this company are exempt from the lawsuit.

This could be pretty big. Of course, it will likely be the subject of a long and drawn-out trial but patent law is fairly clear-cut. Could end in a settlement because I doubt Apple/Dell/Sony would stop manufacturing their products.

gta_cb3680d ago

well i doubt Sony would take/ stop using it in the PS3 lol

techie3681d ago (Edited 3681d ago )

OK then...there are lots of silly patents in the US...so much so it has gone way too far. We have patents in the UK, but not so nit-picking as these.

Patents like "3d graphics displayed on a screen"...there is a patent for that in the US! It's not even something anyone has invented...

I'm sorry there are some silly patents.

BenzMoney3681d ago

I fail to see how having patent laws is stupid? The idea behind a patent law is to allow a company which has developed a certain technology exclusive access to that technology, or a "temporary monopoly". They are free to license that technology to anyone else who's willing to pay fees to use it. This is to encourage research and development; afterall, what's the point in spending time, effort and money developing something if you don't get any exclusive rights to using it?

I think your statement is ignorant.

xbox360migs3680d ago

Deepbrown is just pointing out that some patents are just plain ridiculous. Patents are obviously important to protect the creators ideas but some go too far...Whats next a patent on breathing or walking. anyhow back to the topic...Fair play to them, companies should check patents on technology before using it or accept the consequences. This could be huge!

BenzMoney3680d ago

The whole point of a patent is to put into record *all* of the details of something so that the developer is protected against people copying their product exactly. You can't simply patent the phrase or idea "3D graphics displayed on a screen", and I challenge you to dig up this supposed patent and show it to me. If such a patent exists, it must be much more complicated than you're suggesting it is. It would have to be a WAY to display 3D graphics on a screen by a specific MEANS. You can't patent an idea, in other words, which is what it seems you're suggesting.

The UK has just as many "silly" patents as any other country, I'm sure.

I'm interested in how people could think that some patents "go too far"? I genuinely am. How is it that not allowing someone to use something that you've developed without express permission considered "going too far"?

...The only instances that I can think of in which it might be is in the case of pharmaceuticals (or other similar products) where the health and well-being of the public is at risk and the company which holds the patent is unable to produce enough supply, or is simply extorting the system for money when people are dying.

Raist3680d ago

Patents aren't nit-picking is the US, because you can patent like everything, and the texts are usually not really accurate. So companies can patent something, just claiming some unclear points, and then come like "look ! that's what we said ! give the money !"

Patents in Europe are much more controlled and precise, and you can't just patent ideas.

Now i find it very funny that a non-profit, research fundation is asking for money.

techie3680d ago

I just told you a patent that had gone too far. "3d graphics presented on a screen"...they have to pay out for that.

Many of these things have never been developed or produced, they are just put on a piece of paper and sent off, hoping that some other company will produce something close to what they have on the paper so they can cash in.

I wonder if you've done a search on patents? You will come up with a number of sites saying "crazy patents".

Patent 1"Apparatus for facilitating the birth of a child by centrifugal force"

Patent 2 "A method of swinging on a swing"

There are many that just go too far...and where it goes wrong in the states is that any patent "infringment" ends up in a legal suit. It continues in that you can sue anyone for anything in the states. The system is somewhat flawed.

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 3680d ago
Dlacy13g3681d ago

But...look at what is happening to Vonage. They stole Verizon's VOIP technology...and now the courts have ruled in Verizons favor...Vonage is sinking just about as fast as the Titanic and looks like it will be out of business very soon.

The Snake3680d ago

Good. No more Vonage commercials with that lame ass song.

Merovee3681d ago

Neither Apple, Dell, Sony or the others knew any differently. They all paid for Bluetooth tech from a company that was ripping off the Patent holder yet they're the ones getting sued. It's the Immersion suit all over again. Instead of rectifying the problem immediatly with the offending party the patent holder waits for a huge penetration rate then sue that parties clients for as much as possible.

It's not patent laws that are faulty it's the fact that business law is carried out in such a piss poor manner. All the trial SHOULD be about is the Washington Research Organization claiming their lost money from CSR and barring CSR from using the technology. Yet instead they sue everyone else as CSR has less money.

It would be like me releasing a fake version of windows and selling it to you, but then Microsoft sues you for buying It because all of you make more money than I do, so it must be your fault.

kewlkat0073680d ago

This is a legitimate and not some BS Lawsuit?

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