On Tuesday, RFCyber Corp. filed an action against the tech giant in the Western District of Texas for patent infringement. The five patents-in-suit generally relate to an apparatus and methods for enabling secure contactless payment with a mobile device. For the alleged willful infringement, RFCyber seeks declaratory and injunctive relief barring further infringement, damages, and its attorneys’ fees and litigation costs.
According to the complaint, the technologies were invented by Liang Seng Koh, Hsin Pan, Xiangzhen Xie, Futong Cho, and Fuliang Cho. However, it explains, RFCyber is the sole and exclusive owner of all the accompanying rights or is the exclusive licensee bestowed with the right to sue for infringement.
The filing states that the patents’ contactless payment technology affords significant time-savings, specifically in situations where a payment process would otherwise involve more than one contact between a merchant and consumer. The technology accomplishes this by “facilitating the settlement of charges using a [near field communications] mobile device to read off data pertaining to an electronic invoice.”
According to RFCyber, Apple has manufactured, marketed, and sold devices and software that infringe the patents-in-suit. Specifically, the defendant has distributed various iterations of Apple Pay that have included functionality to emulate a payment card and settle a transaction using its proprietary technology since October 2014. The complaint points to numerous accused devices, including the iPhone 6 and subsequent models, Apple’s smart watches and certain lap top models employing Apple’s Touch ID, a fingerprint identification system.
RFCyber contends that these products practice the claims of the asserted patents “to improve the shopping experience of their users, and to improve Apple’s position in the market.” The filing alleges that Apple’s infringement is willful in view of the fact that Apple “knew or should have known that its actions constituted an unjustifiably high risk of infringement.”