Bose Sues Apple Acquisition Beats for Patent Infringement

Apple in CourtBose Corporation filed a complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) Friday accusing Beats Electronics of willfully infringing on five patents, according to Bloomberg. Bose also launched a parallel lawsuit. Beats is in the process of being acquired by Apple, and Bose has accused the company of violating its patents in Beats Studio and Beats Studio Wireless headphones.

Bose wants an injunction prohibiting import of the infringing devices, financial compensation for past infringement. The Verge reported that the suit also seeks a complete accounting of, "all infringing sales and other infringing acts by Beats."

The patents in question involve noise cancelling properties in Beats Studio and Beats Studio Wireless headphones. Bose claimed in the suit that it has been working on noise cancelling technologies for 40 years.

In its ITC filing, Bose said, "The inventions covered by the asserted patents arose out of the inventors’ recognition of the unique technical problems associated with constructing improved high-performance noise canceling headphones."

Apple announced it was acquiring Beats Electronics and Beats Music in May. The deal included US$2.6 billion up front and an additional $400 million that will vest over time. Barring something unexpected—say, for instance, a major lawsuit—the deal is expected to close later in the September quarter.

Neither Bose, nor Beats, nor Apple has commented on the suit or the ITC complaint. If the complaint and the suit aren't settled, Apple is likely to be the owner of both Beats and the proceedings when they go to trial.

Shares of $AAPL closed higher on Friday at $97.671, a gain of $0.641 (+0.66 percent), on moderate volume of 43.4 million shares trading hands.