(Photo: Sean Doherty/LTN)
Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. are usually fierce opponents in patent battles, but they’re on the same side of the table as co-defendants in a new complaint filed at the U.S. International Trade Commission by Luxembourg-based Enterprise Systems Technologies SARL.
The privately held company, which licenses the patents at issue to Microsoft Corp., also named HTC Corp., LG Electronics and Cirrus Logic Inc. in its July 16 complaint.
Enterprise alleges that the companies’ smartphones, tablets and laptop computers infringe four of its patents, which were acquired from Siemens Enterprise Communications Inc. and are not standard-essential. They cover technology used for interfacing applications with operating systems, device driver configuration, a jack that can be shared by a telephone and music player, and a system for routing instant messages.
Enterprise wants the International Trade Commission to ban the import of all infringing products such as Samsung’s Galaxy S5, Apple’s iPhone5S, the Apple Macbook Air, the LG Nexus 5 and HTC One M8.
“The strong public interest in protecting complainant’s valid intellectual property rights outweighs any potentially adverse impact on the public,” wrote James Wodarski, an intellectual property partner at Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo. He also said sales of infringing products to the U.S. government would be exempt from any exclusion order.
The ITC will now decide whether to institute an investigation under Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, a process that generally occurs within 30 days.
Enterprise is represented by a team from Mintz Levin that includes Wodarski, Michael Renaud and Michael McNamara, who together joined the firm from Pepper Hamilton in 2012. Wodarski did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Enterprise is pursuing its claims in U.S. district courts as well. On June 17, Enterprise sued Apple, Cirrus, Qualcomm Inc. and Audience Inc. for patent infringement, filing four separate complaints in Delaware federal court. That same day, the company also sued Samsung, LG, HTC, Motorola Mobility and Amazon.com Inc. in the Eastern District of Texas.
In the Apple complaint, which was amended on July 16, Enterprise asserted that Apple was infringing the same four patents at issue in the ITC case plus one other. The company asked the court to award unspecified damages plus costs and attorney fees.
In the Texas cases, which have been consolidated for all pretrial purposes including discovery and claim construction, Enterprise alleges five patents have been infringed, three of which are also named in the ITC case.
Contact Jenna Greene at email@example.com or on Twitter @jgreenejenna.