Latest reports coming in confirm that Apple's popular FaceTime application has run into rough waters in China, as a man in Taiwan has filed a lawsuit against it in the country. Lee, the plaintiff in this case has accused Apple of violating his patent by way of the FaceTime, a popular video-calling application. According to reports, Lee made the discovery upon buying an iPhone in Zhenjiang. He then decided to move to a local court. A report in China Daily quotes a spokesman for Zhenjiang Intermediate People's Court in Jiangsu province as confirming to have accepted the case.
Taiwan man accuses Apple over FaceTime
As per reports, Lee claims that he was granted the utility model patent by the authorities on “voice network personal digital assistant” technology on April 28, 2004, and that the same is valid through a period of 10 years. It has further been made known that the patent includes a wireless communication module, a flash memory storing codes of network voice service and a personal digital assistant that connects the communication module and memory technologies. He claims this is quite similar to those used by FaceTime. Reports further confirm that although Apple will be required to cease the violation, the compensation has not been specified. This clarification came from a person called Shen, a publicity official at the court. She added that Apple has been informed about the lawsuit.
Apple only recently concluded its rather lengthy lawsuit with Proview Technologies. The company took Apple Inc. to court when the former claimed that they were the rightful owners of the trademark name iPad in China, and not Apple. Hence, the Cupertino-based company was violating on their copyrights by selling its tablet computers in the country. Quite contrary to Proview’s claims, Apple stated that it had acquired the global rights for the trademark name – iPad – and hence, is the rightful owner of the term in China, too.
On this premise, a large scale patent lawsuit boiled over in China, wherein the sales of Apple’s popular tablet computer, iPad, were halted following a temporary impoundment order by Proview Technologies. China is one of Apple’s crucial markets for its products, and with the sales of the tablet coming to a near halt in the country, the picture began turning bleak, since not only is China one of the biggest markets for Apple products, but it is in China that half of Apple products are made. Now both companies have agreed on discussing the possibility of an out-of-court settlement.
Apple and Proview are in dispute over the the amount of money that is to be compensated, since there is a lot of difference between what both Apple and Proview are expecting. Proview, reportedly, owes banks roughly $400 million and hence, it faces a pressure of its own to press a deal. Yet another report has stated that Apple will be offering an undisclosed amount to Proview Technology, in a bid to settle the brewing dispute over the iPad trademark. According to this Times of India report, Apple has offered a compensation package to Proview Technology, but the latter is yet to accept it. Proview Technology has only recently received support from the Chinese Commerce Ministry, thereby adding pressure on Apple.
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