Technology Companies Sued by CalTech Over Patent Infringements

On 07.12.10, In Legal Industry, by Blake

12/7/2010

A California-based research university has filed a lawsuit against technology giants for infringement. The California Institute of Technology (CalTech) claim that LG Electronics, Nokia, Pantech, and a number of other chip manufacturers infringed upon some of its patents.

CalTech is also suing the three mobile phone heavyweights, along with a number of South Korean and Japanese chipmakers, over the alleged violation of specific patents pertaining to mobile phone camera technology. Seti, Siliconfile, Toshiba, and STMicroelectronics NV, were also named in the lawsuit.

The complaint, which was filed in a Los Angeles federal court last Nov. 24, seeks unspecified damages from each of the technology giants for “willful infringement” of its patents.

This is not the first time that the California-based research university has filed a lawsuit over patent infringements. Last year, CalTech also filed a lawsuit against Nikon, Canon, and 4 other major camera manufacturers over pixel sensor patents. They said that these were spawned from the research that the university performed for NASA.

A top executive of LG who is very familiar with the situation said that they are currently reviewing the case and plans to respond to the allegations in the near future.

In the case of Pantech, a representative stated that their legal team would “not consider accepting Caltech’s claim over monetary damages” until they fully understand the claims.

On the other hand, a legal expert said that these lawsuits have virtually no impact on the market or reputations of the technology companies.

The unnamed expert said, “Patent infringement issues are very common in the consumer electronics industry. Leading consumer products companies are usually the targets by developers and most of cases finish with an agreement.”

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