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WiLAN sues RIM over BlackBerry Bluetooth technology

Bluetooth patents have proven to be one of the more popular ways for licensing specialist WiLAN to target tech companies.

Research In Motion has been hit with a new lawsuit from WiLAN.

WiLAN, which derives its revenue from licensing patents to vendors, says that it filed the patent infringement claim against RIM in the Southern District of Florida. The company says that RIM is violating Patent No. 6,260,168 related to Bluetooth technologies.

WiLAN has a long history of initiating litigation to get companies to license its patents. Founded in 1992, the firm calls itself a "leading technology innovation and licensing company." According to the firm, it currently licenses its intellectual property to over 260 companies around the world that offer a range of products, including "3G and 4G handsets, Wi-Fi enabled laptops, [and] Wi-Fi and broadband routers." All told, WiLAN has over 3,000 issued or pending patents.

The Bluetooth patents, however, have proven to be one of the more popular ways for WiLAN to target vendors. In 2010, the company sued nearly 20 of the tech industry's largest companies, including Apple and Sony, for alleged infringement of Bluetooth patents.

Last year, WiLAN launched several more lawsuits against Apple, HP, Dell, and others, over their alleged violation of patents related to CDMA, HSPA, Wi-Fi, and LTE.

The new patent infringement claim against RIM claims that the handset maker's violations extend across a wide array of products, including the BlackBerry Bold and Torch. RIM's defunct BlackBerry PlayBook tablet is also included in the filing.

WiLAN hasn't said how much it's seeking in damages.

CNET has contacted RIM for comment on the lawsuit. We will update this story when we have more information.