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Lawsuits Put Apple and iPhone In Crosshairs

One lawsuit alleges that through its App Store and iTunes applications, Apple infringes on Affinity Labs patents for browsing, streaming and downloading content over wireless and cellular networks.

One lawsuit, filed in the Eastern District of Texas, Lufkin Division by Affinity Labs, alleges that through its App Store and iTunes applications, Apple infringes on Affinity patents for browsing, streaming and downloading content over wireless and cellular networks. The specific complaints, according to the court filing, are that the Apple iPhone and iPod touch use Affinity's technology for voicemail and music streaming, and that iTunes and Apple's App Store infringe on Affinity patents for the download and transfer of content.

Affinity is seeking monetary damages and a court order to stop Apple from patent infringement.

The second lawsuit, from Accolade Systems, alleges Apple violates an Accolade patent through CMOS image sensors used in the iPhone's camera. The charge is indirect; Accolade is claiming that Aptina Imaging and Micron, whose technology Apple uses in iPhone, are the ones in violation of the Accolade patent. According to a Wednesday report published in Apple Insider, the original version of the lawsuit only mentioned Apple incidentally -- the final version names Apple as a defendant alongside Micron and Aptina.

Apple did not respond to a request for comment from Channelweb.com.

Apple is also under fire this week over a clause in the Apple App Store developer agreement that may take money away from software designers who create iPhone applications. Apple and iPhone were on Tuesday sued by a Swiss company, Monec Holding, over whether the Amazon Kindle app and other e-reading apps for the iPhone turn it into an e-book and violate a Monec patent.

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