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Sony and Philips-backed Intertrust sues Apple over security and trusted computing patents

Apple is the target of a new patent infringement suit filed today by Intertrust—a company backed by Sony and Philips that has licensed its patents to many companies in the past including Samsung, Nokia, Microsoft, HTC, Motorola, and others. The Wall Street Journal noted Philips and Sony each hold a 49.5-percent stake in the company that previously settled with Microsoft in 2004 for $440 million related to a patent infringement case.

The announcement from Intertrust on its website doesn’t mention the specific patents or technologies involved in the suit, but it claims Apple products, including iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Macs, iCloud and iTunes, infringe on 15 Intertrust patents related to “security and distributed trusted computing.”

 The lawsuit accuses Apple of making products and services that infringe on 15 Intertrust patents on security and distributed trusted computing. The lawsuit covers a broad range of key Apple products and services including iOS devices such as the iPhone and iPad, Mac computers and laptops, Apple TV, and services including iTunes, iCloud, and the Apple App Store.

“Apple makes many great products that use Intertrust’s inventions,” said Talal Shamoon, Intertrust’s chief executive officer. “Our patents are foundational to modern Internet security and trusted computing, and result from years of internal research and development. We are proud of our record of peaceful and constructive licensing with industry leaders. We find it regrettable that we are forced to seek Court assistance to resolve this matter.”