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ITC to investigate another Apple complaint against HTC

It's the latest Apple attack on the Android phone maker

HTC faces even more pressure from Apple, now that the U.S. International Trade Commission has agreed to investigate another patent-infringement complaint against the Android phone maker.

The decision is in response to a complaint that Apple filed last month. The ITC has not yet said which patents are at issue, only that Apple has asked it to ban the importation of HTC mobile devices that it alleges infringe its patents.

The move follows a blow to HTC in July when the ITC issued an initial determination that HTC infringed two patents, based on a different complaint filed by Apple. The determination is now being reviewed by a larger panel of ITC judges, who can uphold or reject it. If they uphold it, HTC will be banned from importing certain phones to the U.S.

The ITC is also investigating a third Apple complaint against HTC as well as an HTC complaint against Apple.

In addition to the ITC complaints, the companies have also filed patent-infringement lawsuits against each other.

The disputes are part of a larger attack on Android being waged by Apple, Microsoft and others. Apple has also sued Samsung and has spurred the ban of Samsung Android tablets in Australia and now Europe. Microsoft has convinced HTC to pay it licensing fees for each Android phone it makes. In addition, Oracle is battling Google for allegedly infringing Oracle's Java patents and copyrights in Android.

Nancy Gohring covers mobile phones and cloud computing for The IDG News Service. Follow Nancy on Twitter at @idgnancy. Nancy's e-mail address is Nancy_Gohring@idg.com


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