August 31, 2012- Multimedia Patent Trust (MPT) [NPE]filed a new suit against Apple on August 29,alleging that Apple’s iPhones, iPads, desktops, laptops, and software products infringe a patent (5,500,678) related to a video compression. Last month, a Southern District of California Court judge denied an attempt by MPT to add the ’678 patent to an ongoing suit against Apple filed over two years ago. In December 2010, MPT filed suit against Apple, Canon, LG, and TiVo alleging infringement of up to four patents: 4,958,226, 5,136,377, 5,227,878, and 5,550,678. However, the ’678 patent, asserted against other defendants in that case, was not asserted against Apple. In June of 2012, MPT filed a motion for leave to amend its complaint against Apple to include the ’678 patent. On July 11, 2012, Judge Marilyn L. Huff denied the motion. In the order denying the motion, Judge Huff noted that the case is now less than five months from trial (scheduled for November 27, 2012) and that MPT waited over six months after determining that Apple “likely” infringed the ’678 patent to bring the motion to amend the complaint. Judge Huff also questioned why the infringement theory regarding the ’678 patent could not have been based on the information available when MPT filed its original complaint and concluded that the “late request” to amend the complaint would prejudice Apple. Further, Judge Huff’s order notes, “If the Court were to grant MPT leave to amend, MPT and its experts would have more than nine months to prepare their opening expert report on infringement of the ’678 patent. In contrast, Apple would have less than four months to prepare its non-infringement defenses before its rebuttal expert reports are due in October.” 8/29, Southern District of California, assigned to Judge John A. Houston and referred to Magistrate Judge Jan M. Adler, 3:2012cv02135.
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