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A company that holds many patents to digital rights management (DRM) software is suing Apple(s AAPL) over 15 patents. Intertrust Technologies, which is based near Apple headquarters in California, says the iPod, iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV, iCloud and iTunes and other Apple software infringe on its security-related and distributed computing patents, according to papers filed in federal court.
The Wall Street Journal first reported the suit on Wednesday, and noted that Intertrust is not some fly-by-night operation or random patent troll. It has two big backers who are also consumer electronics companies: Sony(s SNE) and Philips.
Intertrust has 250 patents related to digital copy protection software security and and has licensed them to plenty of Apple’s peers — HTC, Samsung, Nokia,(s NOK), Huawei — but Apple is apparently refusing to pay up, which resulted in the filing of the suit.
In a statement, Intertrust CEO Talal Shamoon said:
“Apple makes many great products that use Intertrust’s inventions. Our patents are foundational to modern Internet security and trusted computing, and result from years of internal research and development. We are proud of our record of peaceful and constructive licensing with industry leaders. We find it regrettable that we are forced to seek Court assistance to resolve this matter.”