Lodsys takes on Apple

Although Apple has told Lodsys to stop hassling its developers, the patent troll is dragging the makers of fruit-flavoured apps into court.

In what will be the opening shots in a big patent war, Lodsys filed a patent infringement claim on Tuesday against seven developers who have created apps for iOS, Mac OS X, and Android.

Combay, Iconfactory, Illusion Labs AB, Shovelmate, Quickoffice, Richard Shinderman, and Wulven Game Studios are all being summoned to the Eastern District of Texas by Lodsys.

They will be expected to defend themselves against Patent Number7,620,565 and 7,222,078.
What Lodsys is hoping is that Apple and Google will pay up to indemnify their developers. The big companies lose a lot if they are not seen to protect developers from patent trolls.

Apple general counsel Bruce Sewell told Lodsys to sling its hook insisting that Apple’s patent licensing agreement with Lodsys cover developers.

However, Lodsys wrote on its bog that third-party Developers that are responsiblefor the infringement of Lodsys’ patents and they have to secure the rights for their applications.

It warned developers to review Apple’s own developer agreements to determine the true extent of Apple’s responsibilities.

It points out that Apple’s contract with its developers absolves the company of legal responsibility for third-party patent infringement and limits its responsibility to $50. It looks like Jobs’ Mob might be in trouble.

It is coming up to the Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference, and we expect that if Jobs’ Mob has not changed its contract by then, angry developers will be lighting torches and storming the walled garden.