Bose loses speaker dock patent suit

A judge has ruled against Bose in a patent infringement lawsuit filed by the company against a number of well-known makers of speaker docks for the iPhone, iPod, and iPad. CE Pro reports that the judge ruled that SDI Technologies Inc.—the parent company of iHome—Imation Corp., Memorex Products Inc., 3XM Consulting LLC, and D.P.I. Inc did not violate a Bose patent for “Interactive Sound Reproducing” that covers an audio system that receives signals from a computer and converts the digital signal to an audio signal. The suit covered 144 products in total, including at least one AirPlay-capable unit.

“In our minds, the decision is a boon to Apple users and the entire audio technology industry that’s built up around Apple products,” said a spokesperson for Thompson Coburn, the firm that represented Imation and DPI. “Bose targeted three relatively low-cost producers of speaker docks with the belief they wouldn’t fight the lawsuit and pony up a license fee to Bose. Had these smaller manufacturers folded, Bose likely would have lodged similar infringement claims against higher-cost producers, continuing until it had licensed the entire market. This decision promotes the healthy competition that keeps prices down for Apple consumers.”

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