TOYMAKER FOR THE WELL HEELED Apple has taken another stab at HTC, filing a second complaint with the US International Trade Commission (ITC) over unspecified HTC devices.
Last year Apple filed a lawsuit against HTC alleging that the firm was infringing its patents. As is the case with these legal skirmishes, HTC fired a similar lawsuit back at Apple, and now Apple has run off to the ITC again, filing a second complaint against HTC over portable electronic devices and software.
The ITC has not revealed the details of Apple's complaint but it is pretty obvious that portable devices and software are likely to mean smartphones, possibly HTC's Flyer tablet and HTC's Sense user interface. Grace Lei, HTC's general counsel told Reuters that the company "continues to deny all of Apple's past and present claims" and in a statement she said, "HTC is dismayed that Apple has resorted to competition in the courts rather than the market place."
Apple on the other hand referred Reuters to a previous statement, in which said it wished that competitors would create their own technology "and not steal Apple's".
Apple's ITC complaint means that it is staring down two of the biggest smartphone makers in the market. Its bitter battle with Samsung is a clash of the titans, and since HTC has done extremely well off the back of Android handsets, it has also become a target for Apple's lawyers.
One of the powers the ITC has is the ability to stop imports of offending products from entering the US. Though Apple's complaint is unlikely to result in US consumers being unable to purchase HTC devices, the possibility of an import ban does add a little extra spice to the usual round of patent infringement lawsuits. µ
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