Apple Still Has 99 Problems, But an Online Music Patent Trolling Lawsuit Isn’t One of Them

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What’s the rap lyric?

“Mo’ money mo’ problems?”  Or better yet, “with success comes stress?”

Well, in the corporate world, oversized success invites lots of unwanted lawsuits and charges, and no one knows that better than Apple.  But the company has just managed to clear a few frivolities, shall we say.

The first involved Sharing Sound, which recently lodged a sweeping set of patent lawsuits related to online music sales.  In reality, most brilliant ideas have a thousand fathers, though patent trolling remains an incredibly expensive – and lucrative – legal endeavor that targets established companies.  Apple, along with a host of companies like Microsoft, RealNetworks, Napster, and even Walmart, were being held in a serious claim related to an oh-so-broad “online music distribution” patent, one that essentially covered everything from song previews to the shopping cart.

Sounds suspiciously parasitic, though Apple has now joined the likes of Microsoft and Napster in settling charges directly with Sharing Sound.  Judge David Folsom of the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas just gave the okay, according to Law360.

And the rest?  Across the Atlantic, the European Commission has dropped a pair of cases related to competitive practices and consumer rights.  The first involved restrictive rules related to App Store development, and the other involved consumer rules for servicing iPhones.  In both cases, Apple offered remedies that satisfied the Commission.

Report by Alexandra Osorio.