updated 02:05 pm EDT, Mon October 17, 2011
ITC sides with Apple on HTC's first complaint
HTC faced another setback in its attempts to counter Apple's legal campaign on Monday after the ITC denied its original patent counter complaint. Judge Charles Bullock determined that Apple hadn't violated four patents for basics such as phone dialing and energy management. The patents were valid, but Apple's iPads, iPhones, and iPods didn't violate them, Bullock ruled.
A final hearing verifying the findings is due in February.
Losing the ITC complaint is dangerous for HTC. While it has civil lawsuits also lined up, it now can't use the threat of a quick ban on iOS devices to try and force Apple into a deal at this stage. HTC itself was found to be infringing on some Apple patents and, despire carrier statements and its own appeal, may be faced with taking some of its devices out of the market. ITC complaints often come in tandem with lawsuits as they tend to complete faster, within 18 months.
HTC still has a second ITC dispute underway, but it might not be decided until 2012.