Apple has been on quite the litigation bender over the last six months, the latest being a billion-dollar penalty slapped on rival Samsung for infringing on a mess of patents.
Google has just filed another patent infringement lawsuit on Apple, but where the litigation trail really gets interesting is in China.
Apple bulldozed over a trademark infringement lawsuit by Chinese company Proview filed last winter for about $1.2 billion. Proview claimed it held the trademark to “iPad” for a device it had discontinued. It licensed the name to Apple, but insisted the license didn’t include the territory of China, and that Apple owed them for selling the device there.
Apple got that case dismissed in May, and now another case has come up that they’ll probably have an even easier time getting dismissed, if they have to acknowledge it at all.
Gizmodo reports that GooPhone, a Hong-Kong based maker of Apple knock-off devices, has already released the iPhone 5 in China, a device Apple just announced that they’ll show the world for the first time on September 12—and they’re actually threatening to sue Apple if they start selling their iPhone 5 in China.
Apparently releasing the iPhone 5 first, based on leaked reports of Apple’s potential product details, makes GooPhone’s device the genuine article in their mind, and Apple would be infringing by selling in their territory.
Crazy, but you’ve got to admire the balls on these guys.