Irvine Company Patents MP3 Phone: I can just smell the lawsuits

Gizmodo, a favorite of the OC Metroblog, is reporting that Irvine, CA and China based company, Hop-On, just received approval for a “”MP3 phone with speakers on the side, in addition to front and side buttons to activate its camera/video features.”

That’s about every camera/MP3 phone ever invented. “Hop-on is now saying they are going to seek payment from all cellphone manufacturers that are within their patent’s scope.” – Digital Trends

This reminds me of the Palm/NCR lawsuit where NCR claimed that Palm infringed on their patent for a “Mobile transaction device” or Apple being sued by Creative for infringing on their patent for “nested Menus.” Both were simple broad patents that were not specific to a technology or device.

The patent system in this country is broken, for a company to receive a patent this late, after a majority of phones have this function will only lead to more frivolous lawsuits in the legal system. My bet is that any lawsuits will get thrown out of court.

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