The US International Trade Commission has sided with Apple in a patent lawsuit brought by Google and its Motorola Mobility subsidiary. The lawsuit was brought against the proximity sensor feature on Apple’s iPhone 4. Motorola had sued Apple three years ago, charging it with violating six of its patents, and today’s patent was the last of six patents to be tossed out of court.
The commission issued a finding of no violation on Monday and terminated the investigation.
Motorola originally filed the complaint in 2010. A judge had found Apple in violation of one of Motorola’s patents in an initial ruling, but the commission overruled the finding and cleared Apple.
The patent in question related to the “sensor controlled user interface” for a “portable communication device.” reports FOSS Patents, “The patent relates to the feature that a touch screen ignores touches if the user is on a phone call and holds the device close to his head. Google wanted the ITC to ban the importation of any iPhones with that feature into the U.S. market.”
The dispute between Apple and Motorola has dragged on for three years, but has mostly flown under the radar due to Apple’s high-profile legal disputes with Samsung over various patents. Google purchased Motorola smack in the middle of the lawsuit, which brought the Android OS maker in direct dispute with the iOS device maker.
Google can still appeal the decision, and most likely will.
Motorola issued a brief statement after the ruling, saying: ” We’re disappointed with this outcome and are evaluating our options.”
Apple has not issued a statement at the time of this article.