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November 6, 2006
NTP Crosses Palm
After beating RIM in a long and drawn-out court case, NTP are going after Palm for its wireless email widgets. The news accounts I've read on this are a bit confused, but it seems likely that Palm's Treo line is the primary target. Treo isn't quite as popular as the "Crackberry" but it's still a significant market share and a big revenue source for Palm. As is typical in these cases, NTP has started by asking for a preliminary injunction on sales as well as damages. I don't think it's any more likely that a judge will grant the injunction than in the Blackberry case; on the other hand, NTP's settlement with RIM may provide a template for a much quicker resolution here that would give Palm protection and allow it to continue business uninterrupted.
Alternatively, Palm might try to drag things out, given that the USPTO has already rejected claims in some of the patents on which NTP is basing its case. If Palm can get favorable rulings out of the Patent Office it may be able to tell NTP to take a flying leap, and save itself potentially hundreds of millions in expenses.
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