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Apple engaging in shady deal with patent troll?

Apple engaging in shady deal with patent troll?
This is either sad…or really sad. According to a recent bit of investigative journalism Apple appears to be transferring some of its patents to a patent holding company, which is then turning around and suing everyone. Everyone except Apple, of course.

The company in question is Digitude Innovations, a company out of Virginia that is filing infringement claims with the ITC left and right. It’s asserting patents against HTC, Motorola, Samsung, LG, Sony, RIM, Nokia, and Amazon. But again, not Apple.

Digitude was formed in 2010, so all of its patents have been obtained from other companies. This last April Digitude announced they had formed a strategic partnership with a leading consumer electronics company, and then the sue-fest began.

The partner was unnamed, but of the four patents that Digitude is asserting two of them belonged to Apple earlier this year. The patents were transferred through Cliff Island LLC, a shell company that only exists on paper, and is run out of the same office as Digitude’s lead investor.

So something appears to be rotten in Cupertino. It’s unclear whether Digitude is an outright hired gun, or if Apple was initially threatened with a lawsuit from Digitude and decided to turn a negative situation into a positive one (for them) by paying them off in patents. Either way, Apple has transferred its intellectual property through a shell company to a patent troll, who is now creating even more chaos for Apple’s competitors. Handling the deal through shell companies has so far allowed Apple to avoid the publicity of launching another round of lawsuits.

Apple and Digitude have so far refused to comment, but perhaps with some public pressure they’ll think different about that.

source: Tech Crunch

90 Comments
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posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:02 41

1. ZayZay (Posts: 571; Member since: 26 Feb 2011)


Another reason I don't care for Apple's products. Not feeding my money into this monster to crash companies like their trying to do. I guess they don't like competition.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:17 6

4. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Apple LOVES competition. There's no greater joy than overtaking RIM or watching MicroSoft self implode with its Zune MP3 line. Or watching the initial Android 7" tablets become DOA or how BN or Amazon is currently running circles around Android OEMs as they discount their tablets by hundreds of dollars off the inflated MSRP. It's fun watching Samsung flop with their Galaxy Player MP3 line (didn't Samsung learn from MS' mistakes...hmmm).

Apple's competitors lose because Apple competes in software and uses their expertise in software along with an integrated hardware to win customers.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:22 22

6. jamrockjones (Posts: 345; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)


Wow, how can you read that article and cheer about it. The whole article screams unethical!!! Boo to you ardent1, I'd give you 10 more thumbs down if it would let me.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:26 26

8. iamcc (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Oct 2011)


Ardent I've thought this for awhile but that post just confirmed that you are a total moron.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:32 9

11. ZayZay (Posts: 571; Member since: 26 Feb 2011)


From the looks of this article they don't like competition. They want everyone to shut down and everyone to have an apple product. How is that competition? Putting patents on a rectangle tablet? You have to be kidding me. Apple is a joke with these patents.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:36 7

14. EclipseGSX (Posts: 1731; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


its not really competition is everything "flops" according to you and your flawed logic

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:36 2

15. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Sarcasm is typically lost on the android fanboys who have one track mind.

Android fanboys have no problem when HTC tries to buy a company solely sue Apple. Or how Google "gave" HTC access to patents so HTC can further sue Apple. Google, HTC et al engage in patent trolling BUT THAT OKAY in android fanboys mindsets.

All I am doing is call a spade a spade. When faced with facts that highlight the evil-doings of the android camp, the android fanboys engage in their typical flames.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:40 2

16. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Zayzay - do you even know the difference between a "design" patent and a "utility" patent. My patent is a utility patent.

What stopped other people or companies from filing that design patent in the first place. It's fair game and the johnny came too late are crying sour grapes! Apple paid Nokia for Nokia's technology and that's how the system is supposed to work!!

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:41 1

17. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


If you compete and 'flop"; the flop is reflective of said competition. It's called a flop because it couldn't compete.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:43 2

18. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Because I am not cheering about the article. I am simply pointing out zayzay miss the point on hoe Apple loves to compete by bring out great consumer electronic products.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:44 13

20. ZayZay (Posts: 571; Member since: 26 Feb 2011)


I don't think this is an android fanboy issue. I think your automatically assuming it is. Sounds like your one track mind (which you are calling everyone out on) to attack android users didn't derail. People are simply saying this is ridiculous for Apple to try and shut down all competition. No where in the first comment you replied to did it say android. I DON"T EVEN OWN AN ANDROID.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:47 10

22. ZayZay (Posts: 571; Member since: 26 Feb 2011)


You putting everyone out to be a retard compared to your massive brain. You are the definition of Pedantic.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 11:52 10

23. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4888; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)


No Apple was made to pay Nokia, there is a BIG difference. Apple stole Nokia's patents & got caught.

It was never like what you are implying. Apple lost in court & thus it needed to pay Nokia royalties.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 12:12 12

25. hepresearch (unregistered)


Apple loves competition so much that there will be no competition left when Apple is done with the market.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 12:13 10

26. hepresearch (unregistered)


... and if it doesn't flop, Apple will sue it out of existence.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 12:41 6

38. EclipseGSX (Posts: 1731; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


seriously if it loved competition it wouldnt sue or even make patents because its products are so godlike they sell themselves

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 12:44 16

40. anywherehome (Posts: 971; Member since: 13 Dec 2011)


yes, they are not able to compete so they sue like a little baby

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 12:52 9

42. protozeloz (Posts: 5396; Member since: 16 Sep 2010)


Hello Taco

again I think you are getting things wrong:

"Android fanboys have no problem when HTC tries to buy a company solely sue Apple. Or how Google "gave" HTC access to patents so HTC can further sue Apple. Google, HTC et al engage in patent trolling BUT THAT OKAY in android fanboys mindsets."

-HTC Android pones could be banned from selling what HTC did was simply try to scale to an even position SO their merchandise does not get banned from sales, of both end up holding dangerous win cases and entering an AGREEMENT witch cant be done when they are on a bad position

-Google Gave HTC patents to increase their chances if becoming even on the field, just showing that they CARE for their partners and ecosystem avoiding them from taking

-Google bought Motorola to beef up its arsenal in patent and PROTECT their system

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 13:15 3

48. RazaAsad (Posts: 100; Member since: 24 Nov 2011)


I do not wonder about your comment. One must have such mentality to be an apple fan.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 14:34 5

56. cheetah2k (Posts: 1652; Member since: 16 Jan 2011)


Looks like Apple are "trying" to resurrect some company image.

I guess they think that by transferring the patent trolling to another company will eliminate Apples name from the headlines and restore faith in the Apple brand..

Do they really think we're that stupid?

The "patent troll" image must really be damaging them for Apple to consider such a move

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 14:38 2

58. iKingTrust (banned) (Posts: 716; Member since: 27 Jul 2011)


Im sure it really is not.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 16:03 2

63. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)


Didn't Google and Motorola do something similar? Just asking.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 16:29 7

64. Whateverman (Posts: 3283; Member since: 17 May 2009)


Yes! Google bought Motorola and it's patents...gave 3 to HTC, to DEFEND themselves and the Android platform from Apple's BS lawsuit. The difference is Apple is using this as an offensive strategy to bring down what appears to be every other platform that it competes with.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 17:16 1

65. andro. (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)


The worst part is ifans are either so under apples mind control or so oblivious to reason that they little drool the cash over to apple with out realizing it

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 17:31 3

66. ledbetterp3 (Posts: 467; Member since: 31 Aug 2011)


@ardent1 stfu.

posted on 13 Dec 2011, 18:47

67. denney (Posts: 98; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)


How many times did HTC sue Apple before Apple sued HTC?

If you were punched in the face at random no one would blame you for fighting back.

posted on 14 Dec 2011, 08:29 1

71. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


What is good for Google is good for Apple. Google lost in its bid to acquire Nortel's patents and cried like a little baby. So what does Google do, it engages in patent trolling with HTC.

Yes, the android camp HATE when these facts are disclosed.

posted on 14 Dec 2011, 08:49 1

77. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Zayzay, LEARN TO READ, the android fanboy comment was directed at iamcc, jamrockjones et al who ARE CONFIRMED android fanboys.

I am sticking the FACTS when you stated "[Apple] don't like competition." and provided you numerous examples. So zayzay, why didn't you rebutt my argument? Does the cat have your tongue.

The FACT is android fanboys (in reference to iamcc) HATE it when the truth exposed on how Google and HTC engage in patent trolling but that's okay. It simply a double standard.

posted on 14 Dec 2011, 08:52 1

78. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


That is correct, when a company can't compete, it's not competition.

It's not Apple's fault for setting the bar so high with the iPad that the android OEMs brought out 7" tablets with froyo that turned out to be DOA.

posted on 14 Dec 2011, 08:53 1

79. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Razasad, thanks for the flame. The question remains, can you add something intelligent to the discussion?

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