ITC Delays Android Import Ban Decision Again
It is the second time that the ITC has delayed its decision
By: Maureen O'Gara
Dec. 15, 2011 08:00 AM
The US International Trade Commission, which was supposed to deliver its final decision on whether or not HTC infringes two Apple patents on Wednesday, has pushed back its commissioners' verdict until next Monday, December 19.
It is the second time that the ITC has delayed its decision. It was originally supposed to say whether HTC will be allowed to keep on importing its Android phones into the United States on December 6.
The ITC's reasons are unknown; word of the delay came overnight from HTC, which told Reuters it had gotten a notice of the postponement but that the ITC didn't say why. Patent watcher Florian Mueller thinks it's likely due to the ITC's workload and that it doesn't suggest anything good or ill for either side.
In July one of the ITC's administrative law judges found HTC infringes two of four patents Apple charged it with treading on. The agency's commissioners have to say if he got it right or not.
Apple, HTC and Google are hanging on the decision.
The patents relate to auto-detecting information and real-time signal processing and could implicate all Android devices, with any possible workarounds severely impacting performance.
If the decision goes against HTC, it is believed that Apple is unlikely to settle for a license. The late Steve Jobs told his biographer, "I'm going to destroy Android, because it's a stolen product. I'm willing to go thermonuclear war on this." He pledged every penny Apple has in the bank to the crusade.
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