HTC, the Taiwanese smartphone maker, on Monday lost one of the two patent infringement cases it has brought against Apple, attempting to block the sale of iPhones, iPod Touch devices and iPads in the US.
It is a second defeat for the Taiwanese company in its skirmishes with Apple. In July, Apple won a preliminary ruling against HTC in another case at the International Trade Commission.
On Monday ITC judge Charles Bullock said Apple devices did not violate HTC’s rights to four patents, related to managing a phone’s power supply, protecting data and storing contact information.
Apple and HTC are locked in an increasingly bitter patents war and have each filed two cases against each other at the ITC, aimed at blocking or slowing down the entry of rival smartphones and tablets into the market. The smartphone market grew 65 per cent in the second quarter of the year, according to IDC, the research company, and device manufacturers are increasingly willing to use the courts to gain advantage in this space.
Apple also has ongoing patent disputes with Samsung, another maker of Android phones, while Microsoft has brought cases against companies such as Motorola.