lawsuits - page 2

Apple Could Be Slapped With $38 Million Fine For Using iPad Name In China

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Sure it can play Angry Birds and send email, but it's not worth an internal organ.
Sure it can play Angry Birds and send email, but it's not worth an internal organ.

Apple comes down hard on manufacturers that attempt to use its product names — or any variation of its product names — for their own goods. We learned this yesterday when it was revealed the Cupertino company is demanding a New Zealand case manufacturer to change the name of its driPhone brand. But it seems Apple may be guilty of exactly the same practice, which could land it a $38 million fine from Chinese company Proview Technology.

Apple Threatens To Sue Case Maker Over One Letter In Their Name

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driPhone-case

Known for being overly protective of its “i” brand, Apple has taken aim at another iPhone case manufacturer whose name is dangerously close to that of Apple’s most popular products. The company in question is called “driPhone,” and it produces a waterproof case for the iPhone and other mobile devices. But that could be about to change if Apple has its way.

Today At Cult Of Android: Verizon Believes A 16GB SD Card Is Worth $100, HTC Confirms Sprint Phasing Out Carrier IQ, And More…

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Android may not be every Mac user’s cup of tea, but it’s the biggest mobile operating system in the world, and it’s important to know what’s going on with Android — what it’s doing right, and what it’s doing wrong. Here’s the best stories that hit today over at our sister site, Cult of Android.

Chinese Authors Sue Apple For $1.9 Million Over iBooks Copyright Violations [Report]

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A group of Chinese authors have reportedly filed a lawsuit against Apple in Beijing claiming that the Cupertino company is infringing copyright with books sold through its iBookstore. The Chinese financial magazine Caixin reports that nine authors from the China Written Works Copyright Society (CWWCS) are involved in the suit, which is hoping to secure 11.9 million yuan ($1.9 million) in compensation.

Friday Night Fights: Is Samsung Really Copying Apple? [Feature]

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Laaaaaaaaaaadies and Gentlemen, welcome to Friday Night Fights, a new series of weekly deathmatches between two no-mercy brawlers who will fight to the death — or at least agree to disagree — about which is better: Apple or Google, iOS or Android?

This week’s topic is one personal to both iOS and Android fans alike: is Samsung really copying Apple’s designs for its Galaxy series of Android smartphones and tablets? Samsung and Apple are brawling it out on pretty much every continent on Earth trying to get to the bottom of this issue, so it’s only fitting that we try to settle this one in the ring too.

In one corner, we have the 900 pound gorilla, Cult of Mac; in the opposite corner, wearing the green trunks, we have the plucky upstart, Cult of Android!

Place your bets, gentlemen! This is going be a bloody one.

Apple Pays $5MM To Make Touch Patent Lawsuit Go Away

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Photo by For Inspiration Only - http://flic.kr/p/7PxBMW
Photo by For Inspiration Only - http://flic.kr/p/7PxBMW

With billions in the bank, sometimes it is cheaper to pay a few bucks rather than spend time in court. That apparently is the logic behind a $5 million settlement announced in a patent-infringement lawsuit filed against Apple. Despite little chance of a courtroom win, a Taiwan-based touchpad maker is proclaiming victory.

Apple Threatens Chinese Toy Manufacturer With Legal Action Over Steve Jobs Action Figure

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I’d have put my house and children on Apple suing the Chinese toy manufacturer which produces the incredibly realistic Steve Jobs action figure we reported on earlier this week. And just as expected, it’s threatening to do just that.

In Icon has reportedly received a letter from Apple’s legal team which states it must stop producing and selling the 12-inch $99 figure — which sports Steve’s iconic black turtleneck, blue jeans and white sneakers — immediately, or face legal action. Unfortunately for In Icon, it has no intention of quitting.

Apple Settles iTunes Gift Card Class Action Lawsuit, But Don’t Expect A Bonanza

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Did you buy a song off of iTunes for $1.29 before May 2010 with an iTunes Gift Card that said each song cost only $0.99? Thanks to the efforts of lawyers at Kurtzman Carson Consultants, you may be eligible for a class-action payout!

Make room in your piggy bank: you could be up to three dollars and twenty-five cents richer today than you were yesterday!

The class action lawsuit basically deals with iTunes Gift Cards that had been purchased when Apple was transitioning to $1.29 iTunes plus DRM-free songs from their previous standard of $0.99 DRM-protected tracks.

The cards claimed that each iTunes track only sold for about a buck, when actually, Apple had jacked the price of their songs by thirty cents. The class-action lawsuit filed by Gabriel Johnson in July 2009 claimed that consumers became confused by the discrepancy, and deserved their money back.

It seems ridiculous — Apple clearly wasn’t trying to rip anyone off — but the lawsuit continued for the past two years. It has now finally been reconciled, with both parties agreeing to settle out of court to prevent future expense.

If you’d like to file for your three bucks, head on over to Kurtzman Carson Consultants.

Indie iOS Devs Under Legal Fire For Offering In-App Purchases [Update]

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The lead developer behind the popular Mac dock replacement DragThing and the fantastic iOS scientific calculator app pCalc is about to be sued for patent infringement because his software uses Apple’s own in-app purchasing mechanism. And he’s not alone.

Not only will the lawsuit delay the latest update to the free version of pCalc, pCalc Lite, it may just be the opening shot in an IP war, not just against Apple, but against the devs who dare to sell their software on the App Store.

Lawsuit Claims AT&T Habitually Mischarges iPhone Users For Incoming Data

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Wondering just how you went through your 2GB allowance of data this month when all you did was do some browsing and email? A new lawsuit filed in California federal court says you’re not the only one.

The lawsuit filed by Patrick Hendricks alleges that AT&T has been systematically overcharging iPhone and iPad owners with capped data plans by falsely reporting the amount of data. According to Hendricks’ lawyers, this so-called “phantom data” can inflate the actual amount of incoming data by as much as three hundred percent.

“AT&T’s billing system for iPhone and iPad data transactions is like a rigged gas pump that charges for a full gallon when it pumps only nine-tenths of a gallon into your car’s tank,” the complaint reads.

Beats By Dr Dre Sues Rival Headphone Company For Alleged Knockoffs

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Hiphop star Dr Dre is suing a headphone rival for allegedly knocking off his designs.

In a lawsuit, Dr Dre charges Fanny Wang’s new headphones with knocking off the Beats Solo and Studio models. Dr Dre’s headphones are made by Monster and sold under  the “Beats by Dr Dre” brand.

“Fanny Wang’s headphones, color scheme, packaging, and overall advertising campaign directly infringes Beats’ trademark and patent rights,” says a legal letter sent to Fanny Wang, which launched its new ‘phones earlier this month.

“I can honestly say the tactics they are pulling are clearly intended to squash competition,” said Tim Hickman, Fanny Wang’s CEO, in an email.

What do you think? Look at the picture above. On the left is Dr Dre’s Solo; on the right is one of Fanny Wang’s new models. Both are folding headphone designs. Here they are in more detial:

Beats by Dr Dre Solo headphones
Fanny Wang's On Ear headphones

Video: iOS 4.2 Fixes Many Of The iPhone 3G’s Performance Issues

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The iPhone 3G’s sluggishness under iOS 4.0 is so legendary that it has sparked an entire class action lawsuit, but does iOS 4.2 improve things any? Yes, according to TipB: they say that Apple has greatly improved the iPhone 3G’s performance when typing, scrolling, pinching, zooming and browsing under iOS 4.2.

Is that enough to end Bianca Wofford’s class action lawsuit? Probably not… but it certainly makes her claims of an Apple conspiracy to force obsolescence of the iPhone 3G a lot harder to believe than it was already.

Apple Conspired To Make iOS 4 On iPhone 3G Suck, Says Lawsuit

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When owners of the iPhone 3G started reporting massive performance issues with iOS 4, we knew it was only a matter of time before the first lawsuit dropped, and here it is, lodged by plaintiff Biana Wofford in the Superior Court of California for San Diego.

The lawsuit’s even crazier than what we expected though: it thinks Apple conspired to make iOS 4 on the iPhone 3G suck so that users would be forced to upgrade to a new model.

Correction: Who’s *Actually* Suing Whom in Mobile Infographic

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Last week, we all saw a fantastic flow chart showing off who was suing whom for patent infringement in the mobile landscape. Then we saw the same chart as re-imagined by a competent infographic designer.

The only problem? Both charts were based off of the bad data of a New York Times post back in March, which included numerous lawsuits that never actually occurred. That prompted Techdirt‘s Mike Masnick to try his hand at his own version of a “who’s suing whom” chart… which ends up revealing that even more companies are suing each other over mobile patents than anyone had initially thought.

Motorola Sue Apple For Patent Infringement, Asks ITC To Ban iPhone, iPad and Mac Sales

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The file cabinets of mobile companies are always filled with patents, but it’s only recently they have started going to war over them. Before 2007, in fact, most patent disputes were handled behind closed doors with smiles and handshakes. Then the iPhone came along, and all of a sudden, it was sue or die.

Motorola’s the latest company to launch into the smartphone patent lawsuit fray, lodging
a series of patent infringement complaints against Apple in both Northern Illinois and Southern Florida federal district courts, as well as asking the International Trade Commission to ban Apple from importing, marketing or selling all iOS devices, as well as some Mac products. They’re out for blood.

Apple Loses $208.5MM In Cover Flow Patent Infringement Suit

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Although I never end up using it unless I happen to browse music on my iPhone in a supine position, by most accounts, people love Cover Flow, Apple’s virtual shelf for iTunes on the Mac and iOS that displays albums by their cover art (or, in OS X, by its preview image). A nice flourish, but not particularly functional for dealing with large collections, I’ve always thought. Not really worth it.

You have to wonder if Apple isn’t wondering the same thing this morning, after an East Texas Federal Court passed down a ruling saying that Apple has infringed on patents held by Mirror Worlds, a company started by Yale computer science professor and, tragically, Unabomber victim David Gelernter… and been commanded by the court to pay $208.5 million in damages for the transgression.

iControlPad Switches To Bluetooth After Apple Sues Hypermac

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Last time we heard about the iControlPad, the long-delayed physical gamepad for the iPhone and iPod Touch had finally completed its two-and-a-half year journey from the brainpan of its makers to their hands as the very first model dropped off the production lines… now boasting a modular design that would allow the iControlPad to be easily updated to support future iOS handhelds. Since the official site was about to start taking preorders for the first 3,000 units, we imagined that the iControlPad was pretty much done.

Apparently not, though. As fallout to Cupertino’s recent decision to sue Sanho for using repurposed MagSafe adapters and iPod Dock Connectors in their line of HyperMac batteries, the iControlPad team has apparently gotten nervous about connecting the gamepad through the iPhone’s dock connector. Instead, they are looking to switch over to Bluetooth support.

Apple Launches Patent Infringement Suit Against Sanho Over MagSafe HyperMac Batteries

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Much to the chagrin of consumers who want a cheaper alternative, Apple is notoriously protective of its MagSafe patent… so much so that they have a rich history of suing the third-party builders of MagSafe knock-offs.

Now it appears that Cupertino is going after another one, having filed a patent infringement lawsuit against the Sanho Corporation in the California Northern District Court. Details are still sketchy, with the actual complaint part of the lawsuit as yet unrevealed, but Patently Apple speculates
that this is all about the MagSafe connector baked into Sanho’s third-party HyperMac batteries.

Sanho seemed to think they’d dodged Apple’s MagSafe patents with the HyperMac line, since their products are actually made of recycled official MagSafe products… but Apple may well see things another way… a shame, given the amazing charging capacity and stellar quality of the HyperMac line, which can juice up a MacBook Pro for up to 34 hours.

If you’re looking to buy a HyperMac, then, best get one now. If previous MagSafe lawsuits are anything to go by, they’ll be C&Ded into extinction soon enough.