Apple May Sue Palm Over Pre/iPhone Resemblance

The ongoing debate on whether Apple plans to sue Palm Inc on account of intellectual property (IP) violations over its latest product Pre which has some striking similarities with the iPhone seems to grow with each passing day.

The possibility of a lawsuit also gains strength from statements made by Tim Cook, the acting CEO of Apple who recently mentioned that "We will not stand for having our IP ripped off and we'll use whatever weapons we have at our disposal”

Many analysts believe that even though Palm may face allegations of IP violations from Apple, it has a long history of innovation and a robust a patent portfolio which may hold it in good stead in case of a lawsuit.

However Palm Investors are quite worried over the fact that Apple may actually take Palm to court on IP violations related to touch screen technology and possible trade secret charges being thrown in since Palm is currently headed by Jon Rubenstein, who incidentally was once the head of hardware research and engineering at Apple and played a crucial role in the development of iPhone, iPod and many other popular Apple products.

It is interesting to note that Jon Rubenstein had worked for nearly 16 years with Steve Jobs and was also with him in Next Inc, the company that was launched by Steve Jobs during his exile from Apple.

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Our Comments

It is not surprising that Apple is looking at the prospects of going after Palm over probable IP violations. Palm is headed and backed by a number of former Apple employees and is much smaller than the rest of the touchscreen manufacturers competing against the iPhone. Is it worth for Apple to go after Palm? Possibly not. Tech people and geeks are notoriously against companies trying to make a mint from IP violation (Rambus and SCO to name a few). Apple has not mentioned what IP violations it accuses the Pre Manufacturer of.

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