Bloomberg News is reporting this morning that Apple's iPhone has been found to infringe on three MobileMedia patents in a US court. For those unaware, MobileMedia is an outfit that's owned by Sony, MPEG-LA and Nokia, being formed in early 2010 mostly as a means to enforce patents owned by the trio. Earlier this year, a court ruled that a screen rotation patent suit couldn't go to trial, with the primary issue being a question of whether the iPhone's rotation and call rejection features violated patents held by Sony and Nokia.
We're learning that jurors in Wilmington, Delaware deliberated for around four hours after a weeklong trial before concluding that the trifecta of patents at hand weren't invalid. MobileMedia Chief Executive Officer Larry Horn said in a post-trial courtroom interview: "We're very pleased. We think it's justified." Of course, many would file MobileMedia into the "patent troll" category, as the firm sued Apple in 2010 contending that it infringed 14 patents in total. The case ended up going to trial after the number was carved down to three. The US patents in question are 6,070,068, 6,253,075, 6,427,078, with one of them noted for revolving around the camera's phone and the others covering "call handling and call rejection."
All told, MobileMedia has a binder of around 300 patents, with an MMI spokesperson confirming to us that there are also ongoing trials with RIM (regarding 12 patents) and HTC (regarding 11 patents). Said person wouldn't comment on our questions involving the potential of future licensing agreements, and also said that there's no information to disclose just yet related to damages. We asked if the outcome here could eventually impact other Apple products, but they seemed to suggest that items like the iPod and iPad would not be directly impacted. When asked if MMI was the enforcement wing of the three owners, we were told instead that "it's a subsidiary."