Apple patent dispute halts US HTC One X and Evo 4G LTE shipments

New shipments of two major HTC smartphones in the US, the HTC One X and the HTC 4G LTE, are now up in the air. The Verge reports that US Customs is holding up shipments of both phones while it looks into a patent violation claim made by Apple.

The battle actually began in December when the International Trade Commission ruled that the messaging app and browser in the Android OS infringed on a patent owned by Apple. The ITC set up a ban of all products that contained that software. That ban actually went into effect on April 19th.

Now it looks like US Customs is checking to make sure that the HTC One X and the HTC 4G LTE don't have software that violates Apple's patent. In a statement, HTC said:

The US availability of the HTC One X and HTC EVO 4G LTE has been delayed due to a standard U.S. Customs review of shipments that is required after an ITC exclusion order. We believe we are in compliance with the ruling and HTC is working closely with Customs to secure approval. The HTC One X and HTC Evo 4G LTE have been received enthusiastically by customers and we appreciate their patience as we work to get these products into their hands as soon as possible.

The HTC EVO 4G LTE was supposed to go on sale in the US via Sprint on Friday, May 18th for $199. The HTC One X went on sale on May 8th at AT&T. The AT&T website shows the phone as currently out of stock.

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29 Comments

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hilarious how apple uses these patent disputes to try adn stop HTC from selling phones when apple is known to steal from other companies. look over their history and you will see they didn't make the mouse they bought it from xerox same thing with the GUI. and the apple iphone is not really all that great. android is kicking apple's butts and they know it.

snakes200 said,
hilarious how apple uses these patent disputes to try adn stop HTC from selling phones when apple is known to steal from other companies. look over their history and you will see they didn't make the mouse they bought it from xerox same thing with the GUI. and the apple iphone is not really all that great. android is kicking apple's butts and they know it.

First of all, you don't even know what you're talking about. RTFA. Nowhere does it say that this is about Apple stopping the sale of HTC phones. Better luck next time...

Astra.Xtreme said,

First of all, you don't even know what you're talking about. RTFA. Nowhere does it say that this is about Apple stopping the sale of HTC phones. Better luck next time...

You're right, it doesn't state that anywhere. That doesn't mean that's not what they're doing.

If you beat somebodies sibling then 2 days later they jump you in an ally - I'm sure you can figure out why they did it without them telling you. Actions speak louder than words and Apple is a 4 year old who just got told no in the checkout line at Walmart...

Astra.Xtreme said,

First of all, you don't even know what you're talking about. RTFA. Nowhere does it say that this is about Apple stopping the sale of HTC phones. Better luck next time...

You need to take your own advice. RTFA.

US Customs is holding up shipments of both phones while it looks into a patent violation claim made by Apple.
If customs is holding something, then you can't sell it in your store, because you like....don't have it in the store...because....customs...is holding it... get it?

SirEvan said,

You need to take your own advice. RTFA. If customs is holding something, then you can't sell it in your store, because you like....don't have it in the store...because....customs...is holding it... get it?

What are you talking about? This patent case started back in December, well before Apple would care about when HTC was putting out those phones. If you actually READ the article, it clearly states this temporary block is due to a review ordered by Customs. This has nothing to do with Apple doing this to block HTC, period. You too get a -1 for reading comprehension...

You really think the ITC went and looked, on it's own, at every cell phone made in december, then at every cell-phone related patent, and somehow singled HTC out? Don't be naive. Apple started this.

"Apple won a wide-ranging exclusion order banning the importation of HTC Android devices at the International Trade Commission last December

SirEvan said,
You really think the ITC went and looked, on it's own, at every cell phone made in december, then at every cell-phone related patent, and somehow singled HTC out? Don't be naive. Apple started this.

"Apple won a wide-ranging exclusion order banning the importation of HTC Android devices at the International Trade Commission last December

But this all has nothing to do with HTC, as I said. This is and always was part of the ever ongoing patent war between Apple and Google. This is a software issue, not a hardware issue.

snakes200 said,
... and the apple iphone is not really all that great. android is kicking apple's butts and they know it.

How is Android kicking Apple's butt?

I have an HTC ONE x and I love it. Apple is doing themselves no favours by having customs checking devices. It will only result in bad press for Apple.

Interesting story. This could get very nasty, Qualcomm owns most key patents for UMTS/LTE relating to CDMA modulation. This is why China uses TDMA instead for the above two.

soldier1st said,
Apple needs to stop being a bully, i hope other companies sue apple so then they won't **** anyone else off.

So you think it's okay that other companies profit off of Apple's property? Somebody needs a reality check... This is only a big deal because it's involving Apple, and you know it. If it was Apple being busted for violating a patent of HTC, then you people would be throwing parties. The intelligence is strong here...

Astra.Xtreme said,

So you think it's okay that other companies profit off of Apple's property? Somebody needs a reality check... This is only a big deal because it's involving Apple, and you know it. If it was Apple being busted for violating a patent of HTC, then you people would be throwing parties. The intelligence is strong here...

You're assuming that any of it is "apples" to begin with . Sort of like how Apple tried to sue Samsung for using a grid layout for icons, oh and square icons. Apple thinks it invented the world.

What about the messaging app included in the phone uses something Apple invented? Probably the fact that it sends text messages - Apple invented that, didn't you know? And the browser? Since the browser is webkit based, it's open source. Please tell me how they can sue for the use of an open source browser.

I'm still waiting for Apple to sue for the use of the color white...

KCRic said,
You're assuming that any of it is "apples" to begin with . Sort of like how Apple tried to sue Samsung for using a grid layout for icons, oh and square icons. Apple thinks it invented the world.

What about the messaging app included in the phone uses something Apple invented? Probably the fact that it sends text messages - Apple invented that, didn't you know? And the browser? Since the browser is webkit based, it's open source. Please tell me how they can sue for the use of an open source browser.

I'm still waiting for Apple to sue for the use of the color white...

Proof for any of that? Each and every lawsuit they have filed has had a patent linked to it. That's how the system works.

Nokia needs to start getting licensing agreements from all these other vendors for using the patents they own, and im sure they will very soon.

korupt_one said,
Nokia needs to start getting licensing agreements from all these other vendors for using the patents they own, and im sure they will very soon.

they'll wait untill MS aquires Nokia Dont think Nokia is willing to spent millions on costly and months lasting lawsuits at this time

The patent here in dispute covers patent covers "automatically converting phone numbers and email addresses into clickable links that open a menu of options, functions". This functionality has been in Symbian S60 way back in the non-touch T9 era.
Kinda weird that Apple managed to block HTC

korupt_one said,
Nokia needs to start getting licensing agreements from all these other vendors for using the patents they own, and im sure they will very soon.

I would be on HTC's side, but after them refusing to update the EVO 4g to ICS but giving the EVO 3D to ICS and sprint removing my unlimited data plan from underneath me, I'm just going to sit back and laugh.

Kelxin said,
...sprint removing my unlimited data plan from underneath me...

As a Sprint customer myself, how did this happen?

Kelxin said,
I would be on HTC's side, but after them refusing to update the EVO 4g to ICS but giving the EVO 3D to ICS and sprint removing my unlimited data plan from underneath me, I'm just going to sit back and laugh.

Yawn...CM9...YAwn...

Apple just needs to **** off the right companies (i.e Qualcomm or Nokia) and they won't be able to include any cellular radio in their products that supports GSM/UMTS/CDMA/LTE (iDEN iPhone anyone?). So its kind of hilarious they sue other companies over something so trivial when they can be easily driven out of the phone market by a single patent owned by the above two.

zivan56 said,
Apple just needs to **** off the right companies (i.e Qualcomm or Nokia) and they won't be able to include any cellular radio in their products that supports GSM/UMTS/CDMA/LTE (iDEN iPhone anyone?). So its kind of hilarious they sue other companies over something so trivial when they can be easily driven out of the phone market by a single patent owned by the above two.

Except they wouldn't do that because they would lose a tremendous amount of money by doing so. It's the same reason why Samsung still does business with Apple even though they are at a constant patent war. Money talks.

Astra.Xtreme said,

Except they wouldn't do that because they would lose a tremendous amount of money by doing so. It's the same reason why Samsung still does business with Apple even though they are at a constant patent war. Money talks.

That may be your first reaction, but just think about it. The overall number of phone sales will be the same. If Apple suddenly found themselves without wireless chips to put in their iphones... people would just buy competing products instead. Therefore Qualcomm and Nokia wouldn't lose any money at all in the long run.

TCLN Ryster said,

That may be your first reaction, but just think about it. The overall number of phone sales will be the same. If Apple suddenly found themselves without wireless chips to put in their iphones... people would just buy competing products instead. Therefore Qualcomm and Nokia wouldn't lose any money at all in the long run.

So you're saying that if this happened, nobody would buy iPhones anymore and that 100% of that would be to other phones? I don't think that's realistic. Apple has such a cult following and a massive cash stockpile that they would figure out an alternative and not lose a single sale. Hense in the end, it would be a massive loss to Qualcomm and Nokia. Nokia, for one, is barely staying afloat, so they will take all the income they can get.