Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Motorola unit are among 15 companies sued by a small firm over a wireless network patent that once belonged to British communications company BT Group (NYSE:BT).
Steelhead Licensing, which filed its suit in a district court in Delaware, also named Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM), HTC, LG Electronics, Kyocera (NYSE:KYO), NEC Casio Mobile, Pantech, Sony (NYSE:SNE), and ZTE as well as wireless operators AT&T (NYSE:T), Sprint (NYSE:S), Verizon (NYSE:VZ), MetroPCS (NYSE:PCS), and T-Mobile.
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The patent deals with the technology to determine when devices should switch cells in a mobile radio network. “In mobile telephony, it is necessary to maintain an established user connection even if the user is changing locations, or the radio access environment surrounding the user is changing, while the connection is still active,” the company said in its filing.
Among the infringing devices named in the complaint are Apple’s iPhone 5, HTC’s Windows Phone 8X, Motorola’s Droid X and Razr, and RIM’s BlackBerry Curve.
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While the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office still credits the patent to BT, Steelhead insists it exclusively owns the intellectual property. Steelhead has asked for a jury trial in all lawsuits and wants damages sufficient to compensate for past, continuing, and future infringements.
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