Apple denied permission to sue bankrupt Kodak

March 12, 2012 By Nathan Olivarez-Giles

Apple Inc. has been denied permission to file a patent-infringement lawsuit against Eastman Kodak by the film-maker's bankruptcy judge.

Judge Allan Gropper, who is presiding over Kodak's Chapter 11 proceedings in a Manhattan U.S. District Court, shot down Apple's request on Thursday to sue Kodak for alleging that its digital cameras, digital photo frames and printers infringe on patents owned by Apple.

Kodak is looking to sell patents related to its digital imaging products, which in February it stopped production of, for as much as $2.6 billion, according to a Bloomberg report.

In court documents, Apple has said that it wanted to file a complaint against Kodak with the International Trade Commission as it believes it owns the rights to some of the patents Kodak is looking to sell.

Apple may still file a suit with the ITC over the Kodak patent dispute but was looking for the bankruptcy court's permission as a cautionary move.

Gropper, in Manhattan on Thursday, said he should be the one figuring out Apple and Kodak's patent dispute and not the ITC, Bloomberg said.

The patent dispute at the center of the planned lawsuit relates to the QuickTake 100 and 150 digital cameras that Kodak manufactured for Apple in the mid-1990s - a source of multiple suits in the past between Apple, Kodak and other major tech companies.

The ITC ruled in May 2011 that Apple and Ltd. had not violated Kodak-owned patents pertaining to the way preview photos were displayed on digital devices. In January, Kodak sued Apple and over claims that the two companies violate its patents due to the way that their smartphones preview and taken.

Apple has argued that it has rights to the patent as the technology defined in the patent was developed when Kodak and Apple were working together on the QuickTake. Kodak has denied Apple's claims to any ownership.

According to Bloomberg, said in a court filing that it "also planned to seek an injunction against Kodak in federal court."

Explore further: Kodak patent complaint against Apple, RIM rejected

Related Stories

Kodak wins round in patent dispute with Apple

May 13, 2011

(AP) -- Shares of Eastman Kodak Co. shot higher Friday after a judge at the U.S. International Trade Commission rejected Apple Inc.'s digital-camera patent claims against the photography pioneer.

Arbiter says Kodak didn't infringe Apple patents

July 19, 2011

The U.S. arbiter for trade disputes has spurned Apple Inc.'s digital-camera patent claims against Eastman Kodak Co., a 131-year-old photography pioneer caught in a perilous race to redefine itself in the cutthroat digital-imaging ...

Kodak gets 2013 deadline to reorganize

January 20, 2012

(AP) -- Eastman Kodak Co. has obtained a bankruptcy judge's approval to borrow an initial $650 million from Citigroup Inc. to keep operations running while it peddles a trove of digital-imaging patents.

Recommended for you

On soft ground? Tread lightly to stay fast

October 8, 2015

These findings, reported today, Friday 9th October, in the journal Bioinspiration & Biomechanics, offer a new insight into how animals respond to different terrain, and how robots can learn from them.

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

not rated yet Mar 19, 2012
The case of Kodak shows the increasing importance of patent enforcement. Though some in the anti-IP crowd seem to feel as if any form of patent litigation is evil, it's worth noting that a major institution like Kodak splintered due in part to its failure to timely and effectively enforce its IP rights.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.