Judge Posner Expresses Software Patent Doubts after Apple/Motorola Dismissal

Judge Posner Expresses Software Patent Doubts after Apple/Motorola Dismissal

Richard Posner, the U.S. judge who recently squashed Apple Inc.'s smartphone battle with Motorola Inc., has doubts regarding the applicability of patents to software. According to a story in the Chicago Tribune, Posner noted that smartphones have thousands of features, with all of them having legal protection. This "proliferation of patent," Posner said, is a problem.

As promised, Posner issued a full decision June 22nd detailing the rationale behind his tentative dismissal June 7th of the high-stakes lawsuit between Apple and Motorola over patented smartphone technology. Apple, Inc. v. Motorola, Inc., 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 89960 (N.D. Ill. June 22, 2012) [enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers]. Full story on lexis.com.

Posner's skepticism isn't entirely universal. On June 29th, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh granted Apple's request to enjoin Samsung from making, using, offering to sell, or selling Samsung's Galaxy Nexus smartphone. Apple, Inc. v. Samsung Elecs. Co., 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 90979 (N.D. Cal. June 29, 2012) [enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers].

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