Apple Feels Touchy Over Smartphone Patents; Sues Motorola

In a lawsuit Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) has filed against Motorola (NYSE: MOT), it alleges that the smartphones Motorola builds on Google’s Android OS violate six of Apple’s patents, including touch-screen and multitouch technology and ways to display, access and interact with information on the phone, the WSJ reports. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. district court in Wisconsin, is asking a judge to award damages and attorney’s fees and to stop Motorola from selling the products.

Motorola sued Apple first early last month, and the two complaints are only just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to legal disputes in the fiercely competitive smartphone market. For instance, HTC, which also makes phones based on the Android OS, is also entwined in joint lawsuits with Apple.

In a statement, Motorola said it “has a leading intellectual-property portfolio, one of the strongest in the industry, and we intend to vigorously defend ourselves in this matter. We are confident in our position and will pursue our litigation to halt Apple’s continued infringement.” An Apple spokesman declined to comment.