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Apple expands lawsuit against Motorola

Sam Abuelsamid

Perhaps the only department at Apple that works longer hours than engineering these days is legal. The most recent legal dust-up in Cupertino has just expanded, as Apple has amended a patent lawsuit against Motorola to include 12 more claims. This particular fracas began in October when Motorola sued Apple, claiming infringement of 18 patents relating to hardware and services.

Apple subsequently counter-sued, claiming that Motorola's Android phones infringed on a number of Apple patents, mostly covering multi-touch technology. The filing last week adds 12 more patents to the mix, including nine phone patents and three patents that cover set-top box and DVR technology. These patents will probably also get added to Apple's complaint before the International Trade Commission.

While Apple has 24 patents on the table to Motorola's 18, that doesn't necessarily mean much; any number of the patents on either side could be of dubious validity. The most likely outcome is that the two sides will go back and forth filing motions for summary judgements for the next several years. At some point, shortly before either a court or ITC hearing, the lawyers will probably sit down and hammer out a cross-licensing deal that allows both sides to walk away claiming victory, so they can move on to other battles with HTC, Nokia and Microsoft.

[via Electronista]

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