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Geoworks Claims Patent On WAP Technology, Seeks Royalties

Geoworks is claiming patents on parts of the Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) and is saying it wants to collect royalties from those who develop and sell WAP-compliant devices and applications.

The company notified the forum last May that it believed its U.S. patent for the invention of a flexible user interface was an essential part of the WAP. Today, it notified members that it has set up a royalty program and plans to enforce the patent.

The patent is for a flexible user interface for mobile communications devices. This is a technology that enables developers to display an interface on multiple types of platforms and devices. The patent also applies to related uses of the Wireless Markup Language (WML).

"We will be actively working with all (WAP Forum) members to ensure that they have fair rights to our technology," Dave Grannan, president and CEO of Geoworks Corporation, said in a statement.

In a separate white paper posted at the Geoworks site, the company says that vendors of WAP-enabled mobile devices, microbrowsers, servers, applications and sites all potentially must pay the company royalties.

It also set out royalty fees starting with a $20,000 license fee and, depending on the application of the device, a royalty of 10 percent of the price. The fees apply to companies with more than $1 million in annual revenues.

Geoworks says it has already started licensing discussions with several WAP Forum members. The WAP Forum is the industry association that has helped develop and promote WAP.

Companies which may be convinced to pay royalties include Ericsson, Nokia, Baltimore, and Motorola, among others.

from internet.com's allNetDevices.com.



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