THX sues Apple over iPhone, iPad and iMac speaker technology

HX sues Apple over iOS device and iMac speaker technology
THX wants compensation or royalties from Apple

Apple has been accused of stealing patented speaker technology from THX for its line of iOS devices and iMac computers.

The audio company, founded by Star Wars mastermind George Lucas, has filed suit in California claiming Apple has infringed upon a patent granted to THX in 2008.

The patent in question is called "narrow profile speaker configurations and systems" and relates to how speaker units can be connected to flatscreen televisions and desktop computers to boost output.

THX is seeking compensation or royalties from Apple, in its filing to the San Jose federal court, saying the infringement has caused "monetary damage and irreparable harm."


Examining the patent and the suit, AppleInsider commented that speaker configurations within iOS devices did resemble those outlined in the THX patent, but were more obvious within iMac computers.

"Looking at the patent claims, there appears to be some correlation with the configurations used in Apple's products," the report claimed.

"Perhaps most compelling is the latest iMac's speakers, which features an extremely thin profile with channeled acoustics exiting down-facing apertures that are more narrow than the speaker faces hidden within the machine. It is unknown if the speaker housings actually employ '483 patent's designs, though the structure looks to be similar to those described."

Neither Apple, nor THX have commented further on the matter, while Apple has until May 14 to reach a settlement before court proceedings commence in June.

Via Bloomberg

Chris Smith

A technology journalist, writer and videographer of many magazines and websites including T3, Gadget Magazine and He specializes in applications for smartphones, tablets and handheld devices, with bylines also at The Guardian, WIRED, Trusted Reviews and Wareable. Chris is also the podcast host for The Liverpool Way. As well as tech and football, Chris is a pop-punk fan and enjoys the art of wrasslin'.