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Rafe 05-06-2003 01:34 PM

Sendo sue Orange over SPV circuit board
Sendo are suing Orange over a circuit board design in the Orange SPV which they allege infringes a patent granted to Sendo. This follows on from Sendo legal action against Microsoft as a result of the failed partnership.

One of Sendo's greatest assets at the moment is the experience they have in designing and implementing smartphones. Although they haven't released one yet, the company probably has as much, if not more experience than anyone else (perhaps with the exception of Nokia). Certainly the upcoming Symbian Sendo phone is touted as a 2nd generation smartphone.

From the press release it seems Sendo have spoken to Orange about this, but evidently it was not settled to their satisfaction, hence the legal action. Presuambly Orange UK is the target in the first instance because the patent in question is a UK patent. It may be possible that Sendo has world wide patents in which case Sendo might have the option of suing other operators who are using the phone.

The press release does not mention Tanager (the upgraded SPV), but as I understand the innards are very similar (its a casing redesign more than anything). If this is the case then this violation would apply to the Tanager as well. This potentially has a huge impact on the Microsoft Smartphone strategy. Although I'm not a legal expert I would assume if there has been a violation then Orange may not only have to pay damages, but also withdraw the phone or pay Sendo licensing fees.

That Sendo feel confident enough to launch a legal case must mean they have some confidence in the allegation. The question is how did the technology get out? The obvious answer must be related to the Microsoft -Sendo case where Sendo allege that Microsoft passed on Sendo secrets to others...

It will be interesting to see how this develops.

Sendo have released the following press release:


Birmingham - 5 June 2003, Sendo today confirmed that it has initiated legal proceedings in the High Court of Justice in London against the mobile phone operator Orange in the United Kingdom. The legal action has been taken because Sendo believes that the Orange SPV smartphone infringes a patent granted to Sendo relating to the design of the circuit board within the phone.

In a reaction Sendo's CEO, Hugh Brogan, stated: "Sendo has created intellectual property rights within the smartphone and mobile phone area. We have been advised by our patent agents, that the Orange SPV phone infringes these rights. We have tried to solve the matter in an amicable way. However, we are now in a position that we have to take legal steps. We are seeking damages and an injunction to restrain sales of the product. As we have previously stated, if Sendo believes that its global intellectual property rights are infringed, wherever in the world this might be, we will take steps to defend those rights."

langdona 05-06-2003 02:45 PM

Interesting but will anything be decided before the SPV becomes obsolete?

MirekCz 05-06-2003 05:27 PM

wasn't SPV obsolete since it was released?
Probably mainly thanks to bogus Microsoft OS :-)

Go Sendo Go :-)

Rear_Admiral 05-06-2003 10:11 PM

Well, if that is the case Orange/Microsoft would probably have to pay an amount of money for every SPV made. I think it is strange though (I'm not a law student, so correct me if you can) that Orange is being sued, because they are only the ones selling them, not the ones making them. HTC would be the one to sue I would think...

langdona 06-06-2003 09:10 AM

So does SPV really mean Sendo Patent Violation? :o

Hillsie 06-06-2003 10:13 AM

The thing i find most interesting is that if Sendo are willing to pursue any operator using a Microsoft HTC phone on the grounds that it contains stolen intellectual property, then that is just one more reason for the industry to turn away from the Beast and into the Warm Loving arms of the Symbain Ecosystem. :D

When will the Beast learn?

TANKERx 07-06-2003 12:26 PM

Unfortunately, the beast will never learn. It'll just throw lies and money at aything to which it turns its hand.

The good thing about the SPV and Microsoft Smartphone in general is that it is achieing the complete opposite to what it's done in the PC arena.

If you think about it, the people who choose Windows over Linux do so because of compatibility and ease of use. I know that Linux is getting easier to configure, but it's still not as intuitive as Windows.

Now anybody has used an SPV will tell you that it is more like Linux than Windows in that it's just full of menus and registry hacks just to get things to work. Applications lack the ability to do the most basic things (for example, photo applications don't let you configure folders for your photos, so you have to get your hands on a file explorer). If you want to run software from a memory card, you need to get your hands on a registry hacker. if you want to have photos of callers, you have to buy a caller ID application that takes up 1Mb of execution memory and slows down the phone.

But does this mean that Microsoft is defeated? No. Does this mean that Microsoft will fix these problems? No. What it does mean is that Microsoft will try anything it can to force people to do what it wants by telling lies and throwing money at the situation - who knows, they may even try and buy SyncML! ;-)

Don't trust them. They can afford to lose a few battles.

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