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Judge: Apple may have a hard job in invalidating HTC patents

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A U.S. trade judge has hinted that Apple may have a difficult job in invalidating patents owned by HTC. U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) Judge Thomas Pender said in Washington on Thursday that “clear and convincing means something to me,” speaking about the legalities of determining whether a patent should or shouldn’t have been issued in the ongoing legal battle, reports “Bloomberg Businessweek” (http://macte.ch/ZQspu).

HTC claims Apple infringes two patents it owns for ways to reliably transmit a larger amount of data. The company says the patented methods are critical to the 4G technology known as LTE, or long-term evolution, that allow faster downloads.

A victory could let HTC seek an import ban of the latest iPad and even the newest iPhone, if it uses LTE when it’s unveiled, according to “Bloomberg Businessweek.” That could give the Taiwanese handset maker leverage to force a settlement with Apple, which has made its own patent-infringement claims against HTC, the article adds.

This is all part of an ongoing legal battle. In November 2010 Apple sued Motorola, alleging that the company’s smartphone lineup and the operating software it uses infringe on the iPhone-maker’s intellectual property. The two lawsuits came after Motorola sued Apple in October 2010 for patent infringement. Motorola claims that Apple’s iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and certain Mac computers infringe Motorola patents.

Also in 2010 Apple filed a lawsuit against HTC for infringing on 20 Apple patents related to the iPhone’s user interface, underlying architecture and hardware. The lawsuit was filed concurrently with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) and in U.S. District Court in Delaware.

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