HTC has announced it is suing Apple for infringing five of its patents in the US.

The Taiwanese firm is seeking an injunction against the import and sale of the iPhone, iPad and iPod in the US, meaning this war could quickly escalate.

"As the innovator of the original Windows Mobile PocketPC Phone Edition in 2002 and the first Android smartphone in 2008, HTC believes the industry should be driven by healthy competition and innovation that offer consumers the best, most accessible mobile experiences possible," said Jason Mackenzie, VP of North America for HTC.

"We are taking this action against Apple to protect our intellectual property, our industry partners, and most importantly our customers that use HTC phones."

Tit-for-tat

HTC won't comment on which patents are infringed, but it must assume they're pretty meaty if it's to defeat the volume of infringements Apple is alleging HTC is committing.

It seems likely that this counter-suing stance is the result of its agreement with Microsoft recently to license key patents from the Redmond group - with this power behind it HTC is ready to try and beat Apple at its own game.

We're sure the attempt to stop Apple importing into the US will mean this comes to court quickly - we just hope it doesn't drag on for years and years and the two brands come to a settlement soon and concentrating on making great smartphones.