Apple v. Android:
Judge finds for Motorola,
Denies import ban

The US International Trade Commission (ITC) has issued a preliminary ruling that Motorola Mobility does not infringe on three patents owned by Apple:

It is held that no violation of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended, 19 U.S.C. § 1337, has occurred in the importation into the United States, the sale for importation, or the sale within the United States after importation of certain mobile devices and related software by reason of infringement of one or more of Claims 1, 2, 10, 11, 24-26, and 29 U.S. Patent No. 7,812,828 ("the ‘828 Patent"), claims 1-7 and 10 of U.S. Patent No. 7,663,607 ("the ‘607 Patent"), and claims 1, 3, and 5 of the U.S. Patent No. 5,379,430 ("the ‘430 Patent").

Motorola, which agreed last year to be bought by Google for $12.5 billion, is a leading manufacturer of smartphones and tablet computers running Google’s Android operating system. Although Apple is the world’s largest manufacturer of smartphones, with 29% of the market, Android (which is licensed for free) runs on more than half of the world’s smartphones.

After Apple sued HTC (which also makes Android-based devices) for patent infringement, Motorola filed a preemptive ITC complaint against Apple in October, 2010, claiming 18 violations of its own patents. Apple sued Motorola in return, claiming infringement of 24 Apple patents for multitouch technologies and user interfaces in Android phones, and seeking to block imports into the US of the allegedly infringing devices.

The case, In the Matter of Mobile Devices and Related Software, 337-750, will now go before a full six-judge ITC panel.