Handset makers sued over alleged patent infringement
May 7, 2009
Will justice be served?
Fractus S.A. of Barcelona, Spain, is suing mobile phone manufacturers Samsung, LG, Research In Motion, Pantech, Kyocera, Palm, HTC, Sharp, UTStarcom, and Sanyo for allegedly infringing upon nine patents held by Fractus.
The case was filed in the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division, Case No. 6:09-cv-203. Fractus develops internal antennas for mobile phones and other industries. Founded in 1999, Fractus set out to meet the challenge of delivering antennas small enough to fit inside a mobile phone yet powerful enough to support today's multiband handsets.
"Fractus has been a major innovator in internal antenna technology, as evidenced by its patent portfolio," said Justin Nelson, one of the attorney's representing Fractus. "Fractus seeks damages and alleges that four defendants' infringement is willful and deliberate, entitling Fractus to increased damages.
"Fractus is also seeking injunctive relief, enjoining the defendants from further infringement -- which would mean either using Fractus products in their phones or licensing the company's technology," Mr. Nelson said.
Fractus has been named a 2005 Davos World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer and one of Red Herring's top innovative companies for 2006.
It has also won the 2004 Frost & Sullivan award for technological innovation and the 2007 Elektra European Electronics Industry R&D Award.
Fractus holds over 80 patents worldwide, including over 30 United States patents.
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According to the filing, Fractus claims that the defendants "infringe the '208 patent by its manufacture, use, sale, importation, and/or offer for sale of its products, including but not limited to certain mobile phones with internal antennas, and its contributing to and inducement of others to manufacture, use, sell, import, and/or offer for sale infringing products."
Fractus claims that if it is found that the manufacturers' infringement of any of the patents was willful and deliberate, it will demand increased damages.
"We are grateful that Fractus has chosen us to represent them in enforcing these patents," said Max Tribble of Susman Godfrey L.L.P., lead lawyer for Fractus.
"It is very brave of Fractus to fight against these cell phone companies, many of whom knew about Fractus and its technology yet still continued to infringe," he said. "Fractus's inventions have added tremendous value to both the cell phone user and manufacturer."
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