Hardware maker One-E-Way filed a lawsuit alleging that several of Apple and Beats’ products infringed a range of patents covering wireless audio systems,media Apple Insider reported. One-E-Way filed a lawsuit Thursday in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, alleging that Apple and Beats products, including AirPods and Powerbeats models, used a range of patent-protected technologies dating back to 2001.
U.S. patent numbers 7,865, 258 and 8,131,391, all titled “Wireless Digital Audio Music System,” used AirPods, AirPods Pro, HomePod, Powerbeats, Powerbeats Pro, Powerbeats 3, Beats Solo Pro, Beats Solo 3, Beat Studio 3, Beats X and Beats. Pill plus. 258 and 391 patents require priority from patent applications filed in 2001.
The patent covers a method of using code-splitting multi-access (CDMA) technology to facilitate “private listening” by other nearby wireless devices working in the same band. In addition, the IP uses a number of techniques to address potential interference in other device transmissions. The lawsuit states that devices that support versions 2.0 to 5.2 of the Bluetooth standard are using the technology, among other technologies.
As bluetooth-enabled products, Apple and Beats wireless models are paired with host devices and assigned a unique user code and “original audio signal representation” for over-frequency communication via packets. These devices further “reduce inter-symbol interference coding” by applying pulse shaping, CDMA communication, digital modules, and other Bluetooth-compliant assets.
While One-E-Way appears to be advocating a precedent for the agreement, the lawsuit fails to distinguish between how the patent is filed for novel technology that is superior to Bluetooth. It’s not clear why Apple is listed as an infringer alone. Apple did add patented technology to enable fast device switching and powerful connectivity with its dedicated W1 and H1 chips. There was no mention of hardware and support software in Thursday’s lawsuit.
One-E-Way in its case claimed to pay royalties, interest and court costs.