CHINA / SOCIETY
Shanghai court accepts Xiaoi Robot’s injunction application against Apple's iPhones for Siri patent infringement
Shanghai court accepts Xiaoi Robot’s injunction application against Apple’s iPhones for Siri patent infringement
Published: Sep 07, 2021 05:08 PM
Xiaoi Robot interacts with audience Photo: VCG

Xiaoi Robot interacts with audience Photo: VCG

 

Shanghai High People's Court accepted on Monday the injunction application from Shanghai-based artificial intelligent (AI) start-up Xiaoi Robot Technology Corp for action preservation on the production, sale, promise to sell, import, and use of Apple's iPhones involving personal assistant Siri, which Xiaoi claims infringes on its patent. The trial of the case is still ongoing. 

Previously, Apple had challenged the validity of the "Little i Robot" patent owned by Xiaoi, in response to a lawsuit filed by Xiaoi against Apple. 

The Supreme People's Court of China made the final verdict in favor of the patent of Xiaoi last June, confirming the patent's validity. 

Xiaoi filed a lawsuit with the Shanghai High People's Court in August 2020, requesting Apple to stop its patent infringement and claimed 10 billion yuan ($1.55 billion) in compensation. 

The legal battle between the two companies has lasted for nine years since 2012 when Xiaoi claimed that Apple's Siri application, which debuted in 2011 alongside the iPhone 4S, fell into the region of its patent protection and filed a lawsuit against Apple for patent infringement in June 2012. 

According to Xiaoi, the company filed the patent application in 2004 with the Chinese patent office and was authorized the patent in 2009. 

In response, Apple filed an invalidation request to the then Patent Reexamination Board (PRB) of the State Intellectual Property Office against the patent. The PRB made a validity decision in 2013. 

The two companies have since filed a total of three appeals before the final verdict in favor of Xiaoi was made by the Supreme People's Court of China last June, which meant the case could advance to a civil lawsuit. 

Zhai Xuan, marketing director of Xiaoi told the Global Times on Tuesday that although it may take time for the court to make a decision on the injunction application, and the legal battle between the two companies has already lasted for nearly a decade and will probably last for more years to come, the company's resolution to fight for their rights will not change. 

Apple did not reply to the Global Times' interview request on Tuesday as of press time.

But media reported that Apple had responded in 2020 that "Apple deeply respects innovation, and our teams work tirelessly to create new technology and product features to delight our customers. This case has been going on for 8 years. Siri does not contain features included in their patent, which relates to games and instant messaging, and we are disappointed Xiaoi Robot has filed another lawsuit. Independent appraisers certified by the Supreme People's Court have also concluded that Apple does not infringe XiaoI Robot's technology."

Global Times
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