Power of Good Patents – Apple pays $100M to Creative

Power of Good Patents – Apple pays $100M to Creative

Inventors should take note, specially in small companies. Patents provide protection for your ideas and businesses.

Apple Computer Inc. said Wednesday that it is paying $100 million to settle a dispute with rival Creative Technology Ltd. over the design of its trendy and iconic iPod digital media player.

Creative, developer of the Zen digital media player, had sued the Cupertino technology company this year, charging that the iPod took its patent-protected technology to sort and organize thousands of songs. It sought, among other remedies, to halt iPod shipments to the United States from China, where they are manufactured.

Apple countersued, arguing that Creative, based in Singapore with U.S. operations in Milpitas, infringed on three of its patents.

The two companies said Wednesday that they had amicably settled their differences. Apple will pay $100 million to license Creative’s technology and use it in its iPods, with the opportunity to get back a portion of the fees if Creative is able to license that technology to other companies.