Apple’s bitter lawsuit battle over patent infringement with HTC continues to rage on and International Trade Commission continues to review the arguments from both the parties, Apple seems to have got its trump card in Andy Rubin. Andy Rubin, a low-level engineer at Apple, based on Apple’s latest claims began ideating Android while he was working at Apple. Apple claims that a key patent for a real-time signal processing API which HTC is accused of infringing in its Android devices was developed by a team of Apple engineers, of which Android co-founder and current Google executive Andy Rubin was a member……………
Andy Rubin, the former CEO of Android and now senior vice president of Google Mobile is in the hot seat of the pending lawsuits against HTC and a recent reply brief in Apple‘s patent infringement case against HTC with the International Trade Commission implies that Google executive Andy Rubin got the inspiration for the Android framework during his time as a low-level engineer at Apple. The statement from Apple that is included in the complaint is quite interesting:
Mr. Rubin began his career at Apple in the early 1990s and worked as a low-level engineer specifically reporting to the inventors of the ’263 [realtime API] patent at the exact time their invention was being conceived and developed. […] It is thus no wonder that the infringing Android platform used the claimed subsystem approach of the ’263 patent that allows for flexibility of design and enables the platform to be “highly customizable and expandable” as HTC touts.
The argument is based on the infringement of two patents, including the 263 realtime API patent. Apple says that Rubin was reporting to the creators of that patent at Apple at the very time that they were inventing it. Apple provided this statement as a clarification that it felt it had to give because HTC had led the commission to believe that Rubin had begun the work on Android at General Magic or Danger. Apple is saying here that Android actually began at Apple and this may not have any direct bearing on the HTC case, it could have far-reaching effects on future cases that Apple undertakes against Google or any other Android manufacturer like the recently acquired Motorola. HTC responded to Apple’s infringement claims saying that it was disappointed at Apple’s constant attempts at litigations and that it vowed to protect its intellectual property rights. HTC CEO Peter Chou then said that the smartphone vendor has enough patents to make a stand, warning Apple that it could use newly acquired patents from its purchase of S3 Graphics to defend itself. The company then fired back against Apple last month, attempting to get a ban placed on Apple products, including the iPhone, iPod and Mac.