Imperium Holdings has filed suit against various mobile giants including Apple, Kyocera, LG, Motorola, Nokia, RIM and Sony Ericsson for infringing on five patents. Filed in the US Texas Eastern District Court on March 18, the case seems to revolve around mobile phone camera technologies:
- U.S. Patent No. 6,271,884: Image flicker reduction with fluorescent lighting.
- U.S. Patent No. 6,838,651: High sensitivity snap shot CMOS image sensor.
- U.S. Patent No. 6,838,715: CMOS image sensor arrangement with reduced pixel light shadowing.
- U.S. Patent No. 7,064,768: Bad pixel correction while preserving features.
- U.S. Patent No. 7,109,535: Semiconductor device for isolating a photodiode to reduce junction leakage.
You're probably wondering who the heck Imperium Holdings is, and so are we. The mystery firm is based in Cayman Islands but has a "place of business" in New York, according to Patently Apple. The mentioned patents are held by two different companies: Conexant Systems and ESS Technology.
Conexant is the assignee on the first patent while the remaining four are owned by ESS. Both tech firms are in California. The former was recently purchased by Golden Gate Capital and its tie to Imperium Holdings is unknown. The latter is a wholly owned subsidiary of Imperium Partners Group.
Naturally, Imperium seeks financial damages, though we haven't seen a specific figure. It's also after a permanent injunction to prohibit Apple and the other companies from further infringing. The filing specifically names the iPhone 3G, BlackBerry Storm 2, and LG Voyager as infringing products.