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Electronics Production | April 01, 2010

Elan sues Apple over multitouch patent

Taiwanese chipmaker Elan Microelectronics has filed a complaint accusing Apple of violating a patent that covers "touch-sensitive input devices with the ability to detect the simultaneous presence of two or more fingers."

Elan states that "We have taken the step of filing the ITC complaint as a continuation of our efforts to enforce our patent rights against Apple's ongoing infringement. A proceeding in the ITC offers a quick and effective way for Elan to enforce its patent." Elan says it is seeking to enforce its patent because it's "a fundamental patent to the detection of multi-fingers that allows for any subsequent multi-finger applications to be implemented." The complaint alleges that Apple is violating Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 (as amended) by importing the iPhone, iPod Touch, MacBook, Magic Mouse and the forthcoming iPad into the United States—infringes Elan's U.S. Patent No. 5,825,352. The company requests that the ITC issue a permanent exclusion order barring the importation of those products into the United States, as well as a cease and desist order barring Apple from selling any of these products in the United States that it has already imported. Meanwhile, Apple itself has sued HTC for similar reasons.
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