ITC ruling in favor of Apple – the end for HTC and other Android manufacturers?

Last Friday, Apple won a major point in its case against HTC. The US International Trade Commission (ITC) ruled in favor of Apple stating that HTC illegally used two patents held by Apple.


The two Apple patents that HTC is infringing are,

U.S. Patent No. 5,946,647 on a “system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data.”
U.S. Patent No. 6,343,263 on a “real-time signal processing system for serially transmitted data.”

These two patent infringement have actually huge repercussions in the Android world. There are actually no manufacturers that are NOT infringing on these two patents. These patents are so basic patents that all Android manufacturer infringes those patents.

But lets refocus on HTC for a second, HTC said that it will appeal of the ruling from ITC. In the meantime, should HTC be guilty, this means that HTC could have to pay a licensing fee to Apple for each Android device it sells. This could range from $5 to $10 per device. HTC is already paying such a royalty to Microsoft for a patent infringement lawsuit it lost earlier this year and pays around $5 per Android devices to Microsoft.

In the worst case scenario, HTC could get ban from the US market. In any cases, things aren’t exactly going to well for HTC.

Since as mentioned earlier, the infringed patents held by Apple are at the core of Android, this means that the fate of other manufacturers will be the same as HTC’s. Not good, could this mean the end of Android? Well kind of. With all these lawsuits and all these extra royalty fees, Android isn’t really a free open source OS anymore. And if manufacturers really get banned from the market, its hard to see how Android will keep growing. So is it over for Android?

[Via fosspatents]

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