Garmin Wins Dutch Lawsuit Brought by TomTom

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Garmin Wins Dutch Lawsuit Brought by TomTom

Garmin vs. TomTomGarmin has today received a decision of the District Court in The Hague, Netherlands denying the preliminary injunction sought by TomTom International B.V. in preliminary relief proceedings alleging infringement by Garmin of a European registered design owned by TomTom. The court also ordered TomTom to pay Garmin's 37,000 euros to cover attorney fees for defending the preliminary relief proceedings. I own a Garmin 2720 myself, but have used TomTom in the past and like both products. I prefer the accuracy of Garmin since they use the NAVTEQ map database where as TomTom uses Tele Atlas. But TomTom has a slick interface and gets high marks for usability. The GPS market must be heating up for lawsuits to be flying between these two competitors. Can't we all just get a long?

"We are pleased with the Dutch court's recognition that TomTom's infringement allegations lack merit," said Andrew Etkind, Garmin's General Counsel. "This baseless lawsuit was filed by TomTom after Garmin took legal action against TomTom in the United States to stop TomTom's pervasive infringement of Garmin's intellectual property rights."

Garmin's lawsuit against TomTom for infringement of five Garmin patents is proceeding in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin and the trial is scheduled for February 2007. Garmin has also recently filed a lawsuit against TomTom in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas for infringement of a sixth Garmin patent. After the Wisconsin lawsuit was filed, TomTom, which does not hold any U.S. patents for technology it developed itself, purchased three U.S. patents from Horizon Navigation, Inc. and then asserted these patents in a counterclaim in the Wisconsin lawsuit.

Garmin has also filed a lawsuit against TomTom in the Netherlands seeking a declaration of non-infringement of the European registered design that was asserted by TomTom in the preliminary relief proceedings. In addition, Garmin has filed a lawsuit against TomTom in the United Kingdom to invalidate a UK patent owned by TomTom.

Garmin currently owns 285 U.S. patents and 3 European registered designs and has 165 patent applications pending. Garmin was recently selected as an inaugural constituent of the Ocean Tomo 300 Patent Index based on the value of Garmin's patent portfolio.

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