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Motorola Mobility Pulls ITC Complaint Against Apple

It was filed in August right before a California jury found Samsung guilty of infringing

In an odd, unexpected, unusual, and perhaps Byzantine move, Google subsidiary Motorola Mobility has dropped its second ITC complaint against Apple.

It was filed in August right before a California jury found Samsung guilty of infringing and awarded Apple $1.05 billion.

In the complaint Motorola charged Apple with infringing seven patents that aren't standards-essential. The ITC formally took the case two weeks ago and on Monday reassigned it to Administrative Law Judge Theodore Essex, who handled Microsoft's ITC complain against Motorola.

Motorola Tuesday moved "to terminate all claims in this investigation without prejudice," which means it could re-file. It also said there was no deal of with Apple.

Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents says if the motion heralded a settlement it would have to be disclosed in detail to the ITC, which has strict rules about such things.

Florian also says Motorola couldn't find all the paperwork related to the patents-in-suit.

He suggests that "Maybe Motorola realized that it proceeded too hastily with its initial complaint and that this could be outcome-determinative in Apple's favor, especially with a very strict judge such as Mr. Essex. Maybe Motorola will re-file its complaint once it has obtained all of the documents. There could also be problems with the legal process involving some of the patents, so if Motorola reasserts some of these patents, it may actually decide not to pursue its claims concerning some others."

He also suggests it might be "a tactical decision involving a plan to reassert the same claims in a federal court" but seems to prefer the idea that "Google identified some reasons for which this complaint was unlikely to succeed at the ITC, and that its overall fight with Apple is continuing as usual."

www.fosspatents.com/2012/10/googles-motorola-mobility-withdraws-its.html.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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