Ford has a lot of cool tech inside some of its late model vehicles. The tech ranges from its Sync system that is powered by Microsoft and Nuance to tech for checking blind spots, stability control, and more. Ford has found itself embroiled in a lawsuit alleging patent infringement by a tech firm called Eagle Harbor Holdings. Eagle Harbor claims that it was in talks in 2002 with Ford to integrate tech using some of its patents into Ford vehicles.
Eagle claims that Ford broke off discussions in 2008 and that after that date tech that violated Eagle patents started showing up in Ford vehicles. The tech that Eagle Holdings alleges infringes on its patents includes Ford’s Sync, Active Park Assist, Blind-Spot identification System with Cross Traffic Alert, Integrated Control System for Stability Control, and MyKey.
I’m not sure what to think on this, we have certainly seen more than a few trolls in the tech world try and make money off patents that only vaguely cover their claims. Ford’s Sync system is especially curious to name in my mind since Ford openly says the system is powered by Microsoft and Nuance. Eagle certainly can’t claim that it owns the patent on hands free devices. I am curious to see more detail on the claims in this case and I am sure over time they will surface. It’s also important to note that just about all car makers have a system in their vehicles today that is very similar to Sync.