Microsoft sued over search-related patents

NEW YORK Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:48pm IST

A man takes pictures of a monitor during an event promoting the debut of Microsoft Corp's Windows 8 operating system at the Akihabara electronic shops district in Tokyo October 25, 2012. REUTERS/Toru Hanai/Files

A man takes pictures of a monitor during an event promoting the debut of Microsoft Corp's Windows 8 operating system at the Akihabara electronic shops district in Tokyo October 25, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Toru Hanai/Files

Related Topics

Stocks

   

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A lawsuit filed on Thursday alleges Microsoft Corp(MSFT.O) has been infringing patents that allow Internet search engines to most effectively place advertisements.

I/P Engine Inc said in the suit filed in Manhattan federal court that Microsoft uses search technology based on inventions by two employees of I/P Engine's parent company, Vringo IncVRNG.A.

Microsoft uses the technology in systems that generate advertisements and associated links for users of the world's largest software company's search engine, Bing, the lawsuit said.

Microsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A spokesman for Vringo declined to comment.

In November 2012, a Virginia jury awarded I/P Engine approximately $30 million in damages after it found that companies including Google Inc(GOOG.O) and AOL Inc(AOL.N) had infringed the same patents that are at issue in the Microsoft suit.

Following I/P Engine's announcement of the verdict, however, its parent company's stock slid by as much as 10 percent. The company had been seeking damages of at least $696 million.

In the lawsuit filed Thursday, I/P Engine claimed that Microsoft has willfully infringed its patents. I/P Engine said that one of its patents was referenced by the U.S. Patent and Trade Office in 2003 when the agency rejected a similar Microsoft patent application.

In patent cases, a party can win higher damages if infringement is found to be willful.

Vringo shares were last up 10 cents, or 3.2 percent, at $3.24 in midday trade on the American Stock Exchange.

Microsoft shares were down 30 cents, or 1.1 percent, at $27.55 on the Nasdaq.

The case is I/P Engine, Inc v. Microsoft Corp, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, No. 12-688.

(Reporting by Erin Geiger Smith, editing by G Crosse)

FILED UNDER:

TECH WRAP

Reuters Showcase

Photo

Vodafone Tax Case

India's Vodafone decision eases tax worries for Shell, others  Full Article 

Facebook Earnings

Facebook Earnings

Facebook tops Wall Street revenue target in 4th quarter.  Full Article 

Japanese Hostage

Japanese Hostage

Islamic State said to set new deadline for hostage swap  Full Article 

Cricket World Cup

Cricket World Cup

Batting holds key for team India in World Cup  Full Article 

Photo

Australian Open

Serena fends off Keys to book blockbuster Sharapova final   Full Article | Related Story 

Road To Development

Road To Development

Build better roads in developing world to bolster food supplies - study  Full Article 

Photo

Laser Pioneer Dies

Laser's co-inventor, Nobel laureate Charles Townes, dead at 99  Full Article 

New ODI Record

New ODI Record

Sri Lanka's Sangakkara breaks ODI record for dismissals  Full Article 

Rohingya Muslims

Rohingya Muslims

Rohingya refugees say traffickers in Malaysia abuse and kill.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device  Full Coverage