“Following a hearing in the morning, a federal judge in the Western District of Wisconsin has canceled an Apple v. Motorola Mobility trial that was scheduled to start today at 1 PM Central Time and has dismissed the entire case with prejudice, meaning that the only way Apple can salvage these claims is through an appeal (but not through refiling in another U.S. district court),” Florian Mueller reports for FOSS Patents.
“When Apple took the position, in response to Motorola’s motion, that it would only accept to be bound by the court’s determination if the royalty doesn’t exceed $1 per iPhone, Judge Barbara B. Crabb reacted negatively and started to wonder whether there was any point in having the FRAND trial that the court and the parties had already prepared for,” Mueller reports. “Yesterday, Motorola’s lawyers sought to reinforce the court’s skepticism while Apple justified its $1 position with the fact that Motorola might later refuse to pay a royalty to Apple, for its own wireless SEPs, based on the same methodology. Apple made two alternative proposals for the way forward: either Motorola could accept to be bound by the principles the court would establish in this case or Apple proposed to build an evidentiary record, over the next 6-9 months or so, and hold a trial setting a rate for a wireless SEP cross-license.”
Mueller reports, “Apparently, Judge Crabb was not persuaded by Apple’s last-minute proposal and determined that there was no case worth holding a trial… Apple can and, I’m sure, will appeal this dismissal. In the meantime, Google, which owns and totally controls Motorola Mobility (Google employees sometimes appear at patent trials as Motorola corporate representatives), may come under pressure from the Federal Trade Commission, which may bring an antitrust lawsuit over the issue of SEP abuse… The Wisconsin situation has no bearing on the Microsoft v. Motorola Mobility FRAND contract trial scheduled to start in the Western District of Washington next week (on Tuesday, November 13, to be precise).”
Read more in the full article here.