The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) has voted to institute an investigation of certain personal data and mobile communications devices and related software. The products at issue in this investigation relate to hardware and software used in mobile communication devices, including but not limited to cellular phones and smartphones.
The investigation is based on a complaint filed by Apple Inc., f/k/a Apple Computer, Inc. and NeXt Software, Inc. f/k/a NeXt Computer, Inc., both of Cupertino, CA, on March 2, 2010. The complaint alleges violations of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 in the importation into the United States and sale of certain personal data and mobile communications devices and related software that infringe patents asserted by the complainants. The complainants request that the USITC issue an exclusion order and a cease and desist order.
The USITC has identified the following as respondents in this investigation:
High Tech Computer Corp. a/k/a HTC Corp. of Taiwan; HTC America, Inc., of Bellevue, WA; and Exedea, Inc., of Houston, TX.
By instituting this investigation (337-TA-710), the USITC has not yet made any decision on the merits of the case. The USITC’s Chief Administrative Law Judge will assign the case to one of the USITC’s six administrative law judges (ALJ), who will schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing. The ALJ will make an initial determination as to whether there is a violation of section 337; that initial determination is subject to review by the Commission.
The USITC will make a final determination in the investigation at the earliest practicable time. Within 45 days after institution of the investigation, the USITC will set a target date for completing the investigation. USITC remedial orders in section 337 cases are effective when issued and become final 60 days after issuance unless disapproved for policy reasons by the U.S. Trade Representative within that 60-day period.
MacDailyNews Take: What we wrote the day Apple filed suit against HTC holds true today: “A sickening chill just swept through the executive offices of many an iPhone wannabe. This time there’s no poorly-written contract signed by an unprepared sugared water salesbozo.”
• We’ve been pushing the state-of-the-art in every facet of design… We’ve been innovating like crazy for the last few years on this and we’ve filed for over 200 patents for all of the inventions in iPhone. And we intend to protect them. – Apple CEO Steve Jobs when unveiling iPhone, January 9, 2007
• We like competition as long as they don’t rip off our IP, in which case we will go after them. We will not stand for having our IP ripped-off and we will use any weapons at our disposal [to stop it]. – Apple COO Tim Cook, January 21, 2009