Just when you thought Apple Watch was the hit of the year, it seems your favorite wearable may not be as high-tech as once thought. A new lawsuit was filed against American electronics giant Apple and its smartwatch device, alleging it has infringed on a patent held by Fort Wayne-based tech company Fossil Group. The suit claims that Fossil’s smartwatches have copied a design for a wristwatch presented by Apple nearly 20 years ago.
If you have an Apple Watch, there’s a good chance that you’re about to lose access to some features because of this lawsuit.
What are Patent Lawsuits?
Patent lawsuits are disputes between patent owners and alleged infringers who argue that their products or services infringe upon the patent owner’s intellectual property rights.
A patent holder may file a patent lawsuit against an alleged infringer. The defendant can be a manufacturer, distributor, retailer, or service provider. The plaintiff in the case may also seek injunctions against infringing activities under the law.
2 Things You Should Know About the Patent Lawsuit on Apple Watches
Here are two things you need to know about the patent lawsuit against apple:
It’s not the first Time Apple’s Been Sued for Infringement
Apple Watch is not the first Time Apple’s been sued for Infringement.
Nokia sued the company in the U.S., Japan, and Germany over patent infringement in 2011. The lawsuit was settled out of court, with Nokia agreeing to pay Apple $1 billion (U.S.).
In 2012, Apple settled a patent dispute with Samsung over smartphone technology that allowed users to quickly scroll through phone lists and contacts without having to tap on each item individually.
The Lawsuit Could Cost Apple up to $100 million.
According to court documents, Apple’s lawsuit against Fossil Inc. could cost the company up to $100 million.
The technology giant accused Fossil of violating patents related to the design and functionality of its Apple Watch, arguing that it had been selling watches with similar features for years before Apple launched its smartwatch.
Considering the popularity of Apple and Apple Watch products, it is likely that many companies have submitted patent applications related to developing smartwatches. Apart from a few details regarding the case, we will have to wait until the case starts.