Apple, Google, and others in crosshairs of 14 patent lawsuit

A new lawsuit from microprocessor company MicroUnity Systems Engineering is targeting more than 22 companies for multiple instances of patent infringement. In addition to Apple and Google, AppleInsider is reporting that MicroUnity is also going after AT&T, Palm, Nokia, Motorola, HTC, LG, Qualcomm, Samsung, Spring, and Texas Instruments. 

Specific devices that MicroUnity is targeting include the iPhone 3GS, iPod Touch, Motorola Droid, Palm Pre, Google Nexus One, and the Nokia N900.

The 14 patents are as follows: 

  • U.S. Patent No. 5,737,547, "System for Placing Entries of an Outstanding Processor Request into a Free Pool After the Request Is Accepted by a Corresponding Peripheral Device."
  • U.S. Patent No. 5,742,840, "General Purpose, Multiple Precision Parallel Operation, Programmable Media Processor."
  • U.S. Patent No. 5,794,061, "General Purpose, Multiple Precision Parallel Operation, Programmable Media Processor."
  • U.S. Patent No. 6,006,318 C1, "General Purpose, Dynamic Partitioning, Programmable Media Processor."
  • U.S. Patent No. 6,427,190, "Configurable Cache Allowing Cache-Type and Buffer-Type Access."
  • U.S. Patent No. 6,725,356 C1, "System with Wide Operand Architecture, and Method."
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,213,131, "Programmable Processor and Method for Partitioned Group Element Selection Operation."
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,216,217 B2, "Programmable Processor with Group Floating-Point Operations."
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,260,708 B2, "Programmable Processor and Method for Partitioned Group Shift."
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,353,367 B2, "System and Software for Catenated Group Shift Instruction."
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,509,366 B2, "Multiplier Array Processing System with Enhanced Utilization at Lower Precision."
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,653,806 B2, "Method and Apparatus for Performing Improved Group Floating-Point Operations."
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,660,972 B2, "Method and Software for Partitioned Floating-Point Multiply-Add Operation."
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,660,973 B2, "System and Apparatus for Group Data Operations."

MicroUnity isn't new to patent lawsuits though, as they have previous experience in patent suits against Sony, AMD, Intel, and Dell--all of which have been settled now as stated on their homepage:

"In the past decades, the company accumulated a large patent portfolio, some of which has been licensed to leading technology companies. In 2003, MicroUnity asserted some of its patents in litigation against Intel and Dell, which concluded with a settlement in 2005. Subsequent patent litigations with Sony and AMD were also settled in 2007."

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