Android devices running Java applications do not infringe on patents belonging to SIM card maker Gemalto, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled. Gemalto sued Google, Motorola, HTC and Samsung Electronics in 2010 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, alleging that the companies infringed on three of its patents when running Java applications on their Android phones. Before Gemalto’s invention, personal computers with microprocessors could run Java applications, but these computers required a substantial amount of memory which was located on chips separate from the processor chip, called off-chip memory. Gemalto’s technology enabled devices with less memory to run applications written in high level programming languages such as Java.
Gemalto NV, the French digital security company, said on Friday that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit rejected its patent claim relating to the Android smart phone operating platform. Gemalto, which makes smart cards, filed a suit in the United States in October 2010 against Google, Motorola, Samsung and HTC, alleging that their Android applications infringed on its patents. The company’s shares, which are traded in Amsterdam, fell 1.8 percent early on Friday. “Gemalto’s has consistently patented and broadly licensed its innovation so we are certainly disappointed by this judgment with regards to the scope of use of some of our intellectual property,” Olivier Piou, the company’s chief executive, said in a statement. Piou said the decision would have “no impact on our historical patents licensing activity, nor on the company’s 2017 long-term objectives.” A company spokeswoman could not immediately be reached for comment. Analysts at ING said the court’s rejection was disappointing. “We had estimated that if Gemalto had won the case the company could have been entitled to either a one-off payment in damages, or higher royalty receipts that could amount to 30-50 million euros per annum,” they said in a note.