Cameras

Philips Files Suit Against Kodak

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April 19, 2006 – Kodak technology is under fire once again; yesterday Philips Corporation filed a suit against Kodak for allegedly infringing on one of its patents. The suit was filed in a U.S. District Court in Delaware and involves a patent that describes a method and apparatus for bit rate reduction.

The suit cites patent number 4,901,075, which was issued in February 1990. According to the suit, Kodak used the bit rate reduction technology in several of its EasyShare digital cameras and even in some of its scanner hardware. Philips did not specify the monetary amount of damages it is seeking in its suit.

In the meantime, Kodak lawyers are keeping plenty busy fending off technology licensee Ampex Corporation. Ampex sued almost every major digital camera manufacturer in 2004 for infringing upon its digital file compression and feed forward quantization technology. The company won every suit, but is still in gridlock with Eastman Kodak Company.

Ampex’s litigation against Kodak began in October 2004. In August 2005, the case was moved to a federal courtroom, where it is scheduled to go on trial in December 2006. Ampex reported that the charges against Kodak cost the company $9.5 million of legal fees in 2005.

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