Smartphone maker HTC has accused Apple of infringing five of its patents, and has asked the International Trade Commission to ban the sale of the Apple handset in the US, as well as the iPod Touch and iPad.
The five patents in question cover mobile phone directory hardware and software, and power-management technology in portable devices.
HTC's lawsuit comes in response to Apple filing a lawsuit against the Taiwanese company in March, in which the iPhone maker accused HTC of using Apple's patented technology in manufacturing its Android-based smartphones.
Some observers believe Apple filed the lawsuit against HTC as a proxy attack on Google, to prevent Google's Android OS from outselling its iPhone OS, which still remains the dominant force in the smartphone market.
Jason Mackenzie, HTC's vice-president for North America told Reuters: “We are taking this action against Apple to protect our intellectual property, our industry partners, and most importantly, our customers that use HTC phones.”
HTC is seeking a total ban on the marketing, sale and importation of Apple's Chinese-built mobile devices in the US.