Bloomberg News

MIT Sues Seagate, Western Digital Over Disk Patents

December 12, 2008

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology sued Seagate Technology (STX:US), the world’s largest maker of hard-disk drives, and Western Digital Corp. (WDC:US) over claims they infringed patents for technology used in memory devices.

MIT accused the companies of infringing two patents assigned to the school in 1997 and 1998 and licensed to Santa Clara, California-based MagSil Corp. TDK Corp. (6762) and units of Samsung Group were also named in the complaint filed today in federal court in Delaware.

The disputed patents focus on hard drives and hard-drive components using Tunneling Magnetoresistive technology, according to the complaint. MIT and MagSil are seeking a court order barring further infringement in addition to unspecified damages.

Brian Ziel, a spokesman at Seagate, based in the Cayman Islands, declined to comment, as did Steve Shattuck, a spokesman at Lake Forest, California-based Western Digital.

Jose Cardona, a spokesman for Samsung Electronics America Inc., didn’t immediately return phone messages seeking comment. TDK spokesman Nobuyuki Koike didn’t immediately respond to an e- mail sent after regular business hours.

The case is MagSil Corp. et al v. Seagate Technology, 08- 00940, U.S. District Court District of Delaware (Wilmington).

To contact the reporter on this story: Sophia Pearson in Wilmington, Delaware

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Rovella in New York at

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Companies Mentioned

  • STX
    (Seagate Technology PLC)
    • $68.4 USD
    • 0.79
    • 1.15%
  • WDC
    (Western Digital Corp)
    • $113.88 USD
    • 1.52
    • 1.33%
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