Shipments of both the HTC One X and EVO 4G LTE were recently delayed by U.S. Customs for review due to an ITC exclusion order from a decision on an Apple complaint back in December. The two devices eventually cleared Customs and began infiltrating the U.S., but it seems that Apple still thinks that HTC is still infringing upon its patent. On June 4, Apple filed a new ITC complaint against HTC, alleging that 29 of HTC's Android products are still in violation of the same "data tapping" patent that HTC said it worked around to get its products past Customs. The products named in Apple's complaint include the One X, One S, One V, EVO 4G LTE, Incredible 4G LTE, Amaze 4G, Wildfire S, ThunderBolt and Jetstream.
The patent in question allows the user to select from a number of actions after clicking on an item such as a phone number or link. FOSS Patents says that the "data tapping" patent actually relates to the internal method of making the feature work rather than the feature itself. Apple included two screenshots in its complaint, seen below, which shows the functionality that the ITC ruled on back in December (left) compared to the feature found on HTC phones that are currently shipping (right).
This latest ITC complaint is the third one that Apple has filed against HTC. Considering that HTC feels that it already worked around Apple's patent and that U.S. Customs cleared the One X and EVO 4G LTE, it'll definitely be interesting to see how the ITC rules on Apple's latest complaint after inspecting HTC's tweaked software. We've yet to get HTC's response to this new ITC complaint, but as usual, you can bet that we'll pass along more details as we get them. Stay tuned!
Via FOSS Patents