UPDATED 13:15 EDT / NOVEMBER 29 2010

Apple, Microsoft Patent Warfare Gets Intense

Several big-name industry players have been looking for a way to reduce hefty patent-related legal costs for quite some time now, and now Apple and Microsoft are pushing forward in an accelerating rate. Apple is taking on the mobile sector with its iPhone, and Microsoft is facing the PC software front regarding Word.   Both industry giants are pulling patents out their pockets, hopeful in retaining a certain amount of control over their respective markets.

“This week, Apple is squaring off against Nokia Oyj, the world’s largest mobile-phone maker, before the International Trade Commission. The dispute, in which each side alleges intellectual property violations, is also a precursor to Apple patent battles with Motorola Inc. and HTC Corp.”

For Apple, its current patent warfare may be somewhat of a sweet revenge. It was the most sued tech company ever since 2008, as it’s now determined to fight fire with fire and financially ‘exhaust’ its opponents with legal disputes. The company seems to be eager to face its competition over the mobile market in court, and has recruited some of the finest in relevant, legal talent over the past year, including Bruce Sewell, Robert Karupka and Noreen Karll.

Microsoft is not lagging behind in the patent arena.  The Supreme Court agreed to consider the company’s challenge to a $290 million patent infringement judgment in favor of plaintiff  Toronto-based technology company i4i Inc. regarding Word and specifically the “Custom XML” technology. Microsoft is also trying to loosen the legal requirements concerning companies facing infringement lawsuits–a move supported by Verizon, Google, Intel, Toyota, Wal-Mart and of course, Apple.


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