RealTime IT News

Xircom Sues 3Com

Legal battles abound between Xircom and 3Com over their separate PC cards and who has the rightful patent.

At the heart of the match lies Xircom's RealPort PC card and 3Com's upcoming Type III PC card.

Xircom , a provider of mobile information access solutions, Thursday filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Central District California (Los Angeles) against 3Com Corp. , charging the maker of computer-networking equipment with patent infringement.

The move counters a similar complaint filed in late May by 3Com in the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah in which 3Com accused infringement on patents for electrical connectors and current surge-protectors for modems. Those papers were served to Xircom in August.

"The move today is a separate action from that filed by 3Com, although it is similar," explained Randy Holliday, general counsel for Xircom. "3Com initiated its suit in May accusing Xircom of copyright infringement. However, in June, while at PC Expo in New York City, we saw 3Com's launch of a new product, Type III PC, and realized that their new product infringed on Xircom's exisiting PC Card.

"In light of the timing of 3Com's suit and its product debut, we believe their initial suit was filed to deflect attention away from their new product."

According to Xircom, its RealPort PC card is also a Type III PC Card, which allows users to connect to data networks without using fragile features that can easily be lost or broken.

According to Brian Johnson of 3Com, "To date, we have not been served papers. Until papers are served, it is too soon to comment."