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Apple sued over e-book patent infringement

updated 05:55 pm EDT, Tue March 24, 2009

Apple sued over ebook

A Swiss company, MONEC Holding AG, has targeted Apple in yet another lawsuit involving the iPhone. The company claims the handset violates a patent entitled "Electronic device, preferably an electronic book." MONEC seeks triple compensatory damages, including lost profits, interest, attorneys fees and costs. The company also aims to receive royalties, along with the assessed value of Apple's gains, profits or benefits resulting from the patent infringement.

"This is an action for patent infringement, unfair trade practices, monopolization and tortious interference with perspective business advantage," the filing reads.

The patent describes a general electronic device with a housing, display, input means, microprocessors, controls and interfaces for data exchange with peripherals. The "preferably provided" touchscreeen display "has dimensions such that with it approximately one page of a book can be illustrated at normal size."

Using a radio network, the patent claims also include provisions for data exchange for e-mail, fax or Internet browsing. Although a large number of handsets and other mobile devices offer the described capabilities, MONEC likely is focusing on Apple because of App Store offerings, such as Kindle for iPhone, and related marketing material.

"Apple makes books and book applications accessible through Wi-Fi and cellular networks from their App Store," the filing asserts. "Apple advertises reading books using an application developed for just that purpose."

MONEC claims that it has suffered injury to its business and property, and "will continue to suffer damages in the future." The lawyers seek a jury trial. It is unknown if the holding group plans to go after other devices, such as Amazon's Kindle.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. trevc

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Mar 2000

    +2

    Owners

    Have they established this? I mean, does Kindle and other new eReaders coming out pay them a royalty??? Or is Kindle not a touch screeN?

  1. peter02l

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Mar 2009

    +3

    Scope

    From the description it sounds like all notebooks and netbooks infringe on this patent. The iPhone, however, should not because it's screen is not the dimensions such that a page of a typical book can be displayed at normal size.

  1. slider

    Mac Elite

    Joined: Oct 1999

    +6

    Wow

    Is this an obvious attempt to go after the biggest money maker or what. First, Apple doesn't write the Kindle for iPhone software, regardless if it's offered on their site. If you really wanted to go after someone for this doesn't it make more sense to go after, oh, I don't know, Amazon or Sony. Seriously, this is pathetic. And the damages they are seeking, triple, for what!

    Oh, and what does this company produce?

  1. LeoNobilis

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 2007

    +3

    Obnoxious Op-por-tu-nists

    Here we go! Apple owes its intellectual property to yet another self-proclaimed Pythagoras! Alas, it costs Apple time ánd money to fight the idiots off - and there are thousands like the impostors in question. It seems Apple must exert the outmost of itself to carry on without going bankrupt, persistently harassed by all sorts of opportunist impostors.

  1. Okonomiyaki

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Apr 2003

    +4

    Other patent ideas?

    "Transportation device, let's say... car."

    "Conveyance device, something like escalator."

    "Waste disposal device, basically toilet."

    Patent reform now please.

  1. b9robot

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2009

    +3

    To vague to be relevant

    This patent is to vague to be relevant. You could twist the words to include so many devices. Just another company trying to get rich off of Apple's hard work.
    Apple should do a hostile take over and shut them down!

  1. b9robot

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2009

    +1

    To vague to be relevant

    This patent is to vague to be relevant. You could twist the words to include so many devices. Just another company trying to get rich off of Apple's hard work.
    Apple should do a hostile take over and shut them down!

  1. cwsmith

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2007

    +5

    Hitchhiker's Guide

    I think Douglas Adams came up with the electronic book idea long before these jokers. Maybe Apple should pay his estate?

    These are opportunistic bottom feeders looking to siphon money from the real innovators.

  1. chas_m

    Joined:

    +3

    BWAHAHAHA

    That will be the sound coming from the courtroom.

    Puh-LEASE!

  1. Zaren

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2001

    +2

    Prior art

    The Palm Pilot. The Pocket PC. Both of these portable device platforms with touch screen interfaces were capable of transmitting and displaying ebooks. Both of these existed years before the iPhone, but are they getting sued? Of course not.

    Just another bogus easy-money trollsuit, which Apple will roll over and pay off because it's quicker and easier than dealing with a full trial.

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