German court dismisses IPCom patent claim against Apple

Apple logo Apple and other phone makers have challenged patents owned by IPCom

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A German court has thrown out a legal claim that sought to extract 1.57bn euros (£1.3bn) in damages from Apple.

The case was filed by German company IPCom which claimed Apple used its technology without permission.

IPCom said Apple was using a system for which it owned a patent to let phones make emergency calls when mobile networks were overloaded.

The same court has also dismissed a similar case brought by IPCom against phone-maker HTC.

Patent lawyer Florian Mueller said the decision by the court in Mannheim, Germany was "without a doubt, a setback for IPCom's enforcement efforts".

IPCom is a patent licensing firm that has acquired the rights to about 1,200 patents that are linked with mobile phones and networks. It has sought to get payments for its patents from many tech firms but so far only Deutsche Telekom is believed to have licensed some of its technologies.

Most other firms have preferred to contest IPCom's claims in court or by asking the European Patent Office to review the technologies detailed in IPCom's patents.

IPCom has yet to comment on the ruling but it is expected to appeal against the dismissal.

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