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Apple, Google and Microsoft Sued Over File Preview

Technology giants Apple, Google and Microsoft are all being sued over “file preview” functionality both in web browsers, and operating systems, that allows users to preview files before actually opening them.

filepreview_legalCygnus Systems is suing the three companies saying that they infringed on its patent (#7346850) which was filed back in 2001, but only granted to them in March of this year.

As PCWorld explains, Cygnus Systems claims that products such as Windows Vista, Internet Explorer 8, Google Chrome, Mac OS X, the Finder, iPhone and Safari all infringe on its patent. Quite a massive claim, clumping such a ubiquitous technology between all three companies shouldn’t hold over well in court.

It seems as though Cygnus Systems is just another company trying to exploit the legal system. A few quotes from the law firm representing them even further that argument. Matt McAndrews, a partner with Niro, Scavone, Haller & Niro, says the following: “They were a logical starting place for us…We’ve identified many other potentially infringing products that we’re investigating.” Sounds just like any other company hoping to cling on to legal loopholes, in the hopes of falling backwards into money. McAndrews continues to explain that Cyngus’ owner and president Gregory Swartz developed the “file previewing” technology while working on IT consulting projects. If the case gets into patents regarding the development of User Interface elements, Cyngus may as well cut their losses. Battling these tech juggernauts over “file preview” would not make any waves at all, let a lone a splash.

Cyngus Systems is looking for “a reasonable royalty” in addition to a court injunction preventing further infringement.

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