Apple Hit with Patent Infringement Suit over Numbers App

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Company says Numbers infringes on its patentData Engine Technologies slapped Apple with a lawsuit over claims that the Numbers spreadsheet app infringes on a patent it holds. The patent in question, 5,463,724, was originally owned by Borland, but DET claims it now has full rights to the patent.

The patent describes a system and method for an "improved spreadsheet interface with user-familiar objects." DET claimed in its filing that Apple is willfully infringing on the patent, which opens the door for a request for triple damages should the company win its claim in court.

The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division. There's a good chance that sounds familiar since that's the same court patent holding firms prefer when filing their infringement lawsuits.

Apple seems to be routinely targeted through this specific court by patent holders, and Patently Apple says DET fits "the classic definition of a patent troll," or a company that uses patent litigation as its business model.

Apple hasn't commented on the lawsuit.

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Apple should poison the well in that court district. Dump some of those building billions into iPads for every person in the jury pool in that district. Define acceptance as acknowledgement of a business relationship…paid “testers” or something.

Robert F

Ha Anybody who supports Apple’s patent war against Android has no right to defend Apple against equally legitimate patent claims filed against Apple. Legally, DAT has just as much right to sue Apple as Apple does to sue Samsung, HTC, etc.

That’s why anyone with their head on straight is calling for patent reform, not simply cheerleading for Apple regardless of which side of the law they are on at the moment.

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