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Old 05-06-2003, 01:34 PM
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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."
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board, circuit, orange, sendo, spv, sue

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