NTP Sues Smartphone Companies Over Email Systems

NTP, a patent holding company, is attempting to dig into the deep pockets of the big-name smartphone companies with a lawsuit alleging that the companies are illegally using NTP’s patented technology.

NTP is best known for the several rounds of litigation that it went through with Research in Motion, the company providing e-mail software and hardware for Blackberry, ending in 2006. The litigation resulted in the patent company walking away with $600 million in settlement money.

The new suit, which is aimed at Apple, Google, HTP, LG and Motorola, charges that these companies are using technology patented by LTP to run their e-mail systems.

NTP was founded in 1992 by Thomas J. Campana Jr., an inventor and engingeer and Donald E. Stout, a lawyer. According to the New York Times, Campana patented several devices, spanning from antennas used on mobile devices to wireless e-mail.

It is NTP’s claim that Campana invented wireless e-mail, therefore, making it the intellectual property of NTP.

Analysts and lawyers say NTP could potentially make hundreds of millions of dollars. But it could also make far less because the technology and product designs have changed drastically since they were first conceived by Campana in the mid 90’s. 

NTP’s argument is that the modern systems run on the foundation of those patented by NTP.

However, the smartphone makers may have deliberately avoided building their smartphone e-mail systems off of those licensed by NTP with the lesson learned from the Blackberry settlement.