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HP wins latest inkjet cartridge patent suit

The U.S. ITC has ruled in favor of Hewlett-Packard over a patent infringement suit over the company's inkjet print cartridges.

HP has won its latest patent infringement suit against several manufacturers who were producing their own HP-compatible inkjet cartridges and printheads.

In a ruling issued Monday (PDF), the U.S. International Trade Commission found that certain HP patents for inkjet cartridges and printheads had been violated by companies making and supplying their own copycat versions.

Specifically, the ITC agreed with its own earlier determination that Asia Pacific Microsystems (APM), a subsidiary of Taiwan-based United Microelectronics, infringed HP patents by making and selling inkjet printheads. The ITC also ruled that MicroJet Technology and PTC Holdings Limited both violated HP's patents by manufacturing and selling inkjet print cartridges.

As a result of the ruling, the U.S. Customs Service has been ordered to prevent the products in question from being imported into the country.

"HP makes a tremendous investment in developing innovative products for our customers and is committed to pursuing action to protect these innovations and, by extension, the value we deliver to our customers," Vyomesh Joshi, executive vice president of HP's Imaging and Printing Group, said in a statement. "HP is pleased with the outcome on these matters and the ITC's enforcement of intellectual property rights."

In the past, HP has aggressively sued manufacturers that it felt had violated its inkjet cartridge patents.

Last year, the company settled patent complaints against several different companies that were making compatible inkjet cartridges for HP printers. In 2007, HP sued a European company for selling color inkjet print cartridges branded as remanufactured products when they were actually new. The company has also gone after the cartridge refilling industry, accusing Cartridge World in 2005 of using a formula for HP-patented ink.