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Apple's iPhone found to infringe Sony, Nokia patents

A US federal jury verdict finds that the iPhone infringed three patents

A federal jury in Delaware has found Apple's iPhone infringes on three patents held by MobileMedia, a patent-holding company formed by Sony, Nokia and MPEG LA.

The jury's verdict in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware was announced on Thursday and came after a seven-day trial and just a day of deliberations.

The jury found that the iPhone 3G, 3GS and 4 directly infringed claims in U.S. patent 6,070,068, which was issued to Sony and covers a method for controlling the connecting state of a call, U.S. patent 6,253,075, issued to Nokia and which covers call rejection, and U.S. patent 6,427,078, also issued to Nokia and which covers a data processing device.

A copy of the completed jury verdict form was seen by IDG News Service.

Apple had argued that all three patents were invalid, but the jury disagreed.

"We're pleased that the court found infringement on all three patents and we think that it's justified," a spokesman for MobileMedia said by phone. He said the company plans to make a more detailed statement later.

Apple did not immediately reply to a request for comment.

The dispute dates back to March 2010, when MobileMedia filed its lawsuit against Apple.

The original complaint included 14 patents, including some claims against iPod media players, but most of those claims were dropped as the case progressed towards a trial. MobileMedia originally asked the court for an injunction against sales of infringing products and damages.

(More to follow.)

Martyn Williams covers mobile telecoms, Silicon Valley and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Martyn on Twitter at @martyn_williams. Martyn's e-mail address is martyn_williams@idg.com


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