Week-end or not, the legal war in the wireless industry continues. Apple has just lost a patent infringement lawsuit filed by Motorola in Germany, based on two patents described as “method for performing a countdown function during a mobile-originated transfer for a packet radio system” and “multiple pager status synchronization system and method”. Both are fundamental enough that they could affect every single Apple handset.According to German law, the court’s decision can lead to an immediate stop in Apple sales to retailers in Germany, although it seems that retailers can technically source Apple products from nearby countries. The stop would take effect even if Apple plans to present counter-arguments down the road.
At this point, nothing is set in stone, but keep in mind that Germany is the biggest market in Europe, and that any trouble there can result in serious financial losses for Apple. These lawsuits are fought with patents as ammunition, and although Apple is now a heavy weight, old school companies like Motorola may simply have more Firepower. Now you see why Google has acquired Motorola Mobility.
For more details, check Florian Mueller’s excellent (and a bit technical) blog post on this matter.