You may have heard about the latest scandal in the world of Apple involving an unknown company called Lodsys which came out of nowhere, applying legal pressure to the makers of popular iPhone apps that use in-app billing in an effort to extort royalties. Patent troll Lodsys (even though they beg to differ) claims Apple, Microsoft and Google signed licensing agreements with them related to in-app purchasing that don’t, however, include third-party apps. Acting on the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s public letter calling out Apple for not stepping up for its developers, the iPhone maker publicly ensured developers that they are covered under its license.
Figuring out the extortionate strategy may have not worked out as expected, Lodsys is now apparently targeting Android developers with patent infringement claims. MacRumors spotted a Google Groups discussion thread which reveals that at least one Android developer may have found itself in Lodsys’ cross-hair. Here’s how that developer described his legal woes with the patent troll firm:
We recently implemented in-app purchases for our Android application and several weeks later we received a letter from Lodsys, claiming that we infringed on their patents. Have any other Android developers out there been sent a letter? Has Google taken any action on this issue yet? Has Google given direction to any developers that have been hit by this? We are obviously a small shop and are not financially capable of defending ourselves over a litigation.
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