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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Coors vs. Hottrix May Set Precedent for Developers

coors light silver bandit logoWelcome to a new world of lawsuits- where developers will battle in the arena known as intellectual property. Coors,known as "An American Original" is accused of copying an Iphone application. As a result,the Denver-based Brewing company is facing an expensive tab- a lawsuit for $12.5 million dollars from Hottrix. The independent developer created the popular "IBeer" application for Iphone on the same day that Coors launched iPint, but Hottrix claims iBeer was designed before Coors' version.

Jason Fisher, the attorney representing Hottrix, told Wired that attempts to reach an agreement with Coors were refuted, so they brought their complaint to Apple, which removed Ipint from the Apple Store. Fisher views the case as a David vs.Goliath scenario. In Wired's article, he explained:

My client is really a mom-and-pop company who just wants to protect their intellectual property rights.When iPint appeared in the App Store, it quickly climbed into the top 10 most downloaded free applications - essentially hurting iBeer's sales. After Apple removed iPint, iBeer made it onto the App Store's top 25 most popular paid applications list. It currently sits at No. 22 on that list.

Both applications launched on July 11, but Hottrix refers to its Youtube video from 2007, which displays the accelerometer technique (tilting the phone) for pouring virtual beer out of the virtual glass. Hottrix's suit comes only days after President Bush signed the Prioritizing Resources and Organization for Intellectual Property Act , which enforces copyright laws.

Keep a close eye on this case, because the verdict may set precedent in a category where many more suits are sure to be filed in the near future.

By Matt O'Hern at 04:08 PM | Comments (0)

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