Bloomberg News

Apple Wins Emblaze Patent Trial Over Live Video Streaming

July 11, 2014

Apple Inc. (AAPL:US) defeated a lawsuit brought by Emblaze Ltd. (BLZ) claiming the iPhone-maker pushed organizations including Major League Baseball to adopt its format for streaming live video, causing them to infringe a patent.

Mark Fowler, a lawyer for Apple, argued to a federal jury at the outset of trial in San Jose, California, that Emblaze was an example of a failed company targeting the iPhone-maker due to its success.

Emblaze manufactured and sold audio products, and attempted to sell its technology to wireless carriers and then phone companies, failing each time, Fowler argued. Fowler failed to convince jurors that Emblaze’s patent is invalid, though they agreed with him that none of the seven accused streaming services infringe it.

Apple is engaged in patent disputes with companies large and small at the San Jose courthouse. Yesterday, it argued for a U.S. sales ban on some older models of Samsung Electronics Co. (005930)’s smartphones after a trial that concluded in May. Evidence in that case showed Google Inc. agreed to aid Samsung’s defense.

Last month, Cupertino, California-based Apple beat back a patent claim over technology in wireless networks from Golden Bridge Technology, Inc.

Shlomo Peretz, a spokesman for Hertzliya Pituach, Israel-based Emblaze, didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail after regular business hours seeking comment on today’s verdict.

U.S. Patent

The trial was over a U.S. patent issued to Emblaze in 2002 covering a process for delivering live-streaming video over wireless networks without interruption.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal limited Emblaze’s case to seven video-streaming services, such as MLB.com’s “At Bat” and WatchESPN.

Martin Pavane, a lawyer for Emblaze, claimed Apple demanded that services such as “At Bat” use its HTTP live-streaming service, or HLS, to drive sales of iPhones and iPads -- and induced infringement of Emblaze’s patent.

In a separate lawsuit pending in the same court, Emblaze accused Microsoft Corp. of infringing the same patent.

The case is Emblaze v. Apple, 11-cv-01079, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (San Jose).

To contact the reporter on this story: Joel Rosenblatt in San Francisco at jrosenblatt@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net Peter Blumberg, Andrew Dunn


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