Creative Sues Apple For iPod Patent Infringement
Creative Technology filed a lawsuit against Apple Computer for patent infringement in federal court and with a U.S. trade agency. Creative claims that Apple’s iPod violates the company’s Zen patent that covers the software menus users navigate to find and play back music on most portable digital media players.
The U.S. Patent Office issued the Zen patent to Creative on August 9, 2005 but engineers working in California filed the patent application on Jan. 5, 2001. Creative is seeking an injunction and increased damages for what it claims is Apple’s “willful infringement of the Zen patent.” Creative said it had filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission asking the agency to probe whether Apple has violated import laws by selling iPod and iPod Nano music players that infringe on Creative’s Zen patent. It is also seeking an exclusion order and cease-and-desist order against Apple that would prohibit it from selling, marketing or importing into the United States its hit products.
The Future: Looks like another Patent Stickup, a la RIM and NTP Holding. Creative, who’s shares are at a 4 1/2 year low, is doing what every other crappy company does when it’s going down the drain, sue! Creative’s lame Zen and Nomad players have been no match for the iPod Juggernaut even with Creative CEO Sim Wong Hoo’s saber-rattling call to “crush Apple.” Well, if you can’t beat ’em, sue ’em! Look for a Apple counter suit and even more litigation!