Apple’s wireless headphones seem to have provided US stereo headphone creators, Koss, with reason to accuse them of patent infringement. Apple were targeted, alongside competitor Beats by DRE, for their wireless headphones design which was said to infringe a total of five patents. In their lawsuit, Koss claim that they invented wireless headphones, as well as in-ear wireless ones, which hold much resemblance to Apple’s AirPods.
In their first claim, Koss insist that Apple infringed a patent on the underlying technology of the headphone. Furthermore the company insist that Apple was aware of their doing as they were said to have tried to meet with Koss, with aims of acquiring a license of the patent. Koss hold a respectable reputation to date and they did pioneer the wireless “private listening system”, thus they have claimed an amount which shall “compensate for such infringement, which by law cannot be less that reasonable royalty, together with interest and costs” reads the suit.
Although the company is no ‘patent troll’ (buying other patents with the intention of using them for infringement claims) they could potentially be missing the point here. The purpose of patent law aims to protect how the product in question was created, rather than what the product is. Their claim appears to be a rather questionable stretch, in insisting that any wireless in-ear product constitutes patent infringement. Their choice of targets are also two very high-profile, financially-successful companies within the tech industry, once again placing a question on Koss’ true reasoning of the claim.
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