Intertrust Sues Apple Over DRM Related Patent Infringements

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A joint venture company between Philips and Sony called Intertrust, has decided to file a patent infringement suit against Apple, asserting that 15 of the company’s patents have been violated.

Intertrust’s patents cover a range of devices and services for digital restrictions management (DRM) to protect intellectual property.

In a statement on the company’s website, Intertrust’s CEO, Talal Shamoon had the following to say regarding the lawsuit.

“Apple makes many great products that use Intertrust’s inventions. Our patents are foundational to modern Internet security and trusted computing, and result from years of internal research and development. We are proud of our record of peaceful and constructive licensing with industry leaders. We find it regrettable that we are forced to seek Court assistance to resolve this matter.”

The lawsuit targets a wide range of Apple’s products and services, including the iPhone, iPad, Macs, Apple TV, iCloud, iTunes, and the App Store. In it’s statement, the company asserts that they have been successful at licensing their patents with companies like Microsoft, Adobe, Samsung, Motorola, Nokia, LG, HTC, Sony, Vodafone, Philips and others.

Striking a settlement deal with Intertrust may not come cheaply for Apple. The Next Web notes that Intertrust settled a complaint with Microsoft in 2004 for a one-time payment of $440 million. Apple has not released a comment on the lawsuit at this time.

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  • VirtualVisitor

    Software patents badly awarded by an under-funded and repeatedly badgered USPTO, will haunt us for a long time.

    90% of the software patents I have seen should be invalidated due to Prior Art, but not known to younger USPTO examiners. I started programming in 1969, and the quality of software patents on the books today is mostly laughable. And dangerous.

    Keep in mind, a weak USPTO benefits large corporations with hordes of lawyers on retainer. It does not benefit society, and clogs the courts and vastly increases the cost of goods on the market.

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Buster HeinBuster Hein is Cult of Mac's Senior News Editor and lives in Phoenix, Arizona. Twitter: @bst3r.

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