Tesla, GM, Ford supplier beats display patent claims in Delaware trial

Apple’s Stephen Chick displays the CarPlay program at the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, California June 2, 2014. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

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  • Microchip said Aptiv’s competing tech cost it millions in lost profits
  • Had asked for over $80 million in damages for alleged infringement

(Reuters) – A Delaware jury on Wednesday rejected claims that technology made by Aptiv PLC for connecting Apple iPhones to automobile entertainment systems violates patents owned by Microchip Technology Inc.

Aptiv’s Dual Role Hub did not infringe any part of a Microchip patent related to its integrated circuits used in competing entertainment systems, the jury said.

Dublin, Ireland-based Aptiv supplies parts for Tesla, General Motors, Ford, Chrysler and Volkswagen cars. Chandler, Arizona-based Microchip said it had lost tens of millions from Aptiv’s sales of the Dual Role Hub.

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Microchip had planned to ask for up to $87.2 million for Aptiv’s alleged infringement of two of its patents, according to a court order from last week, though only one of the patents remained for the jury to consider at trial.

Aptiv’s attorney Daralyn Durie of Durie Tangri said she and the company were “delighted” by the verdict. Microchip and its attorneys did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The jury did not side with Aptiv on its argument that Microchip’s patent was invalid.

Microchip first sued Aptiv over the technology in 2017.

U.S. District Judge Joshua Wolson of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania presided over the case.

The case is Microchip Technology Inc v. Aptiv Services US LLC, U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, No. 1:17-cv-01194.

For Microchip Tech: Bruce Slayden of Slayden Grubert Beard, John Shaw of Shaw Keller

For Aptiv: Daralyn Durie of Durie Tangri, Phil Rovner of Potter Anderson & Corroon

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Blake Brittain

Washington-based correspondent covering court cases, trends, and other developments in intellectual property law, including patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets. Previous experience at Bloomberg Law, Thomson Reuters Practical Law and work as an attorney.

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