Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has lost a patent case in China. A Beijing court gave its decision in favor of a Chinese firm setting the path for the latter to continue with a separate case against Apple Inc (NASDAQ AAPL) for invading the intellectual property rights. The Chinese firm, Zhizhen filed the case against Apple, in 2012, stating that Apple Siri, which also uses voice technology, has violated the Zhizhen’s voice system patents.
Apple has decided to take the matter to the upper court after its appeal against the Chinese tech firm and a government agency was turned down. Earlier, in this case which got turned down, Apple had filed a case against Zhizhen Internet Technology and China’s State Intellectual Property Office, arguing that Zhizhen’s patent rights over a speech recognition technology were invalid.
Apple spokeswoman in Beijing said “Unfortunately, we were not aware of Zhizhen’s patent before we introduced Siri (speech recognition technology) and we do not believe we are using this patent.” She said that in the mean-time when separate court will examine the case, Apple is ready to have a reasonable discussion with the Zhizhen.
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Beijing’s first Intermediate court denied the allegations from Apple and upheld the patent right of Chinese firm, according to the report of People’s Daily newspaper. In relation to the case, where Apple brought a lawsuit against the government agency, the court ruling says that it does not support the cause of action mentioned by U.S. firm.
Apple urged the patenting authority of China to declare Zhizhen patents invalid, in November 2012. But the authorities went by their own decision of validating the patent. The authorities gave patents right to Zhizhen in 2009, and in the year 2012 its founder and chief executive officer Yuan Hui said that Apple Siri has copied its patent.
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Apple has quite a history in patent case disputes with the other companies in China, where iDevices are very popular. In 2012, the iPhone maker settled the legal dispute by paying $60- million to a Chinese firm over iPad trademark. Apple would re-appeal the case in the Beijing Higher People’s court, as per the report. There was no comment from the Chinese firm.
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