It looks like Apple may have infringed upon Creative Technology’s patent for its music players. Although Apple dominates the market, Creative says they have been awarded a patent that was based on their Nomad music player, released September 2000 – 13 months prior to Apple shipping its iPod.
According to Creative, the patent is based on how one selects music via its successive screen prompt (music>artist>song, etc). Apple currently has no comment, but according to reports it is no easy task to claim royalties on a patent; not to mention that Apple controls the MP3 player market so to some it may appear a case of ‘sore loser’. Apple’s iPod success is not based simply on its great functionality and simplicity, but Apple’s ability to market themselves as the market leader with a trendy hip-like quality.
Apple was recently denied a patent filed October of 2002 for its iPod.