Apple Legal Team Studying Lodsys’ Patent Infringement Case

Posted May 17, 2011

The legal department behind Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is “actively investigating” a claim by Texas-based patent holding company Lodsys. Lodsys filed a claim against iPhone and iPad developers that use in-app purchase systems. Lodsys filed a lawsuit against about a dozen iOS developers that are infringing on the 10/732,102 patent. Lodsys bought the patent from the inventor in 2004.

Apple is not expected to respond to these claims until about the end of the week. Lodsys is asking developers for 0.575% for each in-app purchase. Although the figure is not a substantial amount, one developer told the Guardian: “0.575% of the in-app purchase market across all platforms would be a very nice figure to have indeed. And, of course, it’s 0.575% for this patent today. Tomorrow it’s another 1% from some other company, and so on.”

Lodsys said that Apple licensed the patent that covers in-app purchasing, but they added that they can still claim for payments that uses the technology in the developers’ own application. “The scope of [Apple’s] licences does not enable them to provide ‘pixie dust’ to bless another third-party business applications [sic]. The value of the customer relationship is between the Application vendor of record and the paying customer,” said Lodsys in a company statement. Lodsys is also suing Samsung, Brother, Motorola, and HP.

[Guardian UK]