University of Wisconsin takes Apple to court over A7′s performance-enhancing tricks

By , Feb 3, 2014

iPad Air promo (A7 closeup 001)

The University of Wisconsin via its patent-licensing arm, the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, has filed a lawsuit against Apple alleging the company’s in-house designed A7 chip infringes the foundation’s patent designed to improve “the efficiency and performance of contemporary computer processors” by introducing a new process for allowing quicker execution of processor instructions.

It’s been reported Monday that Apple’s 64-bit A7 chip, which acts as the primary engine driving the iPhone 5s, the iPad Air and the iPad mini with Retina display, apparently uses this technology without permission…

AppleInsider reports that the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation isn’t just seeking an injunction barring the iPhone maker from using its technology without a license, they’re also seeking unspecified monetary damages and legal fees.

According to the foundation “Apple has stated that it is the policy of the company not to accept or consider proposals regarding licensing from outside entities like WARF for any purpose” so a lawsuit was needed.

The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation owns the U.S. Patent No. 5,781,752 entitled ‘Table Based Data Speculation Circuit for Parallel Processing Computer’.

The invention outlines a predictor circuit which permits quicker execution of processor instructions, based on previous instructions and “mis-speculations detected at the final stages of processing”.

Branch prediction and other performance-enhancing tricks have been used for ages in processors, but that doesn’t exonerate Apple as the firm apparently knew about this patent – a few of Apple’s own patent filings even cite the foundation’s patent.

  • Share:
  • Follow:
  • Framboogle

    Just another troll wanting Apples money

    • Raashid

      Pathetic hypocrite…’nuff said.

    • Sandy Cook

      I no rite? Only Apple is allowed to defend their IP. Using ‘their IP’ very loosely mind

  • Willie

    “Performing enhancing” makes A7 chips sound high on steroids.

  • Matt

    Ha ha.
    If Apple does loose in the court what do they have to loose — up $500million? I mean that’s like pennies for them. They are the wealthiest company in the world.

    • ✪ aidan harris ✪

      True. I don’t know the legal system too well but couldn’t it be much worse though? For example could Apple be forced to stop selling the 5s if they are found to be infringing?

      • Matt

        They could be forced to do that, but the chances for such things are very slim.
        Apple tried to ban number of Samsung devices in the US a few years ago and were unsuccessful.
        Also Apple is large part of US economy, it’s is the richest company in the world and it’s an American comany, and the iPhone is the largest selling Apple product.
        I don’t think iPhones will be banned – hopefully now.
        If you see where I’m going with this.

      • El Arqui Tecto

        So because it’s the richest company they can infringe patents?

      • Blip dude

        Nope, but unless I’m seriously mistaken, it would not surprise me if America plays favorite with Apple, which honestly, I don’t accept but I do expect.

      • Anthony Aaron Anderson

        You are right, the chances of the US self sabotaging it’s economy over a patent, just wouldn’t happen. The US would likely reform laws before trying to toy with the company that holds an entire tenth of its total wealth. Apple may be using that as a cost strategy, they know they will likely be charged damages and licensing fees eventually, but the amount of time they avoid paying (if they play it out in court right) could end up costing them slightly less overall. (I’m no expert, this is all opinion based, I could be wrong)

  • appl3h4ck3r

    Apple is such a dirty company wtf yo….although it’s funny….WARF rhymes with barf….haha oh how I need to get a life xD

  • Nino

    I guess the school’s funding ran out…

  • Christopher

    They should be happy apple implemented what they made in a good way

  • Cesar D

    I’m not sure if this are good or bad news.

  • Chris

    This is becoming a joke now, if these guys took their invention seriously then they would have asked Apple to pay a licensing fee for using the technology, but instead they have chosen the long, time consuming and costly road of suing a brand with more money then they will ever see in 100 life times.

    Like Framboogle said, they are just trolls.

    • donds

      “Apple has stated that it is the policy of the company not to
      accept or consider proposals regarding licensing from outside entities
      like WARF for any purpose” so a lawsuit was needed.”

      ” Apple as the firm apparently knew about this patent – a few of Apple’s own patent filings even cite the foundation’s patent.”

      • Chris

        Thanks for the info

    • Raashid

      Idiot…

      • Chris

        I’m an idiot because I have an opinion, so mature of you.

        Being Australian I don’t educate myself about Universities in the U.S and I don’t involve my knowledge with Apples core legal policies as I have better things to focus on, in saying that all you had to do is say “hey, Apple has a policy against this…”.

        At least I made an effort to express my opinion on the internet while all you had the nerve to do is call me an idiot.

      • Raashid

        You called for it; you ignoramusly commented on post by only reading and comprehending half of it (or just the headline). By conventional logic, that fits the definition of an idiot…so…

    • Felipe Almario

      Read the fkn article kid. they actually tried that but Apple said no.

  • Mhmd Bassam Nasyr

    the title is so wrong

  • xSeriouSx

    “Apple has stated that it is the policy of the company not to accept or consider proposals regarding licensing from outside entities like WARF for any purpose”

    WTF, so in other words, it’s actually Apple’s policy to steal other people’s stuff instead of accepting a license agreement? What a great artist Apple has become…

  • Raashid

    Wow, just look at all the hypocritical fanboy comments…they’ve really mirrored Apple’s hypocritical side (http://bit ly/1eugsjQ).